ACL Airshop has gone live with Star Flow from Yellowstar. The cloud based solution provides the repairer of Unit Load Device (ULD) air containers with far more control on their repair processes of ULD containers and the workflow that goes with it. Osman Akdemir, Director Innovations at Yellowstar: “The service logistics application allows ACL Airshop to react quicker to repair requests.” Jos Jacobsen, General Manager at ACL Airshop, who also leads their ACL Airshop division: “All we need from a functionality point of view is available in Star Flow. All data is available in one Control Tower, which helps us improve our planning and forecasting. In the future, we might even add functionality to the solution. This is a big step forward for our ACL Airshop business unit.”
ACL Airshop is part of ACL Airshop, a worldwide operating company specialized in the leasing of ULD pallets and containers. Every container the company repairs, needs to meet air cargo certificate requirements. The same counts for the parts being used. In addition, customers need to have a clear view on when a repair process will be finished. This demands from ACL Airshop to registrate every activity it performs and parts it uses during repair processes. It applies to activities such as order request, order intake, monitoring, delivery, invoicing and all communication with customers in between of these tasks. All of the work processes need to be visible at a glance.
Previous to the going live of the cloud based Star Flow solution ACL Airshop was not yet working paperless. Furthermore, it used several IT-systems. These software tools were unable to seamlessly synchronize data. By incorporating all workflow activities and process steps into the Yellowstar application, ACL Airshop has improved transparency into its operations. The going live is still fresh, at the moment ACL Airshop is filling the Star Flow solution with data. Once finished doing so, it allows the company to embrace future improvements. Akdemir: “ACL Airshop will be able to better support customers. The follow up or order requests will speed up and all communication with partners will be centralized, run smoother and be more transparent.” Jacobsen: “We are very pleased we were able to automate so many activities, from the request of reports to having insight into inventory levels and communicating with customers. The application will support us as well in establishing connections with third party systems.”
Star Flow is a true service logistics application. It allows ACL Airshop to dig deep into the data and to act proactively. The result is a better transparency in the maintenance frequency of a certain type of container per vendor. If the data analyses shows that a container after a tenfold use frequently shows a defect, ACL Airshop can offer preventive maintenance. “I am sure we will use this intensively in the near future. For the moment, we focus on filling the system with our data. I do expect a lot from the improved insight into which parts we need to order at which moment”, says Jacobsen.
The Star Flow application supports ACL Airshop in responding quicker to repair demands. Akdemir: “Data is digitally available, which helps ACL Airshop in answering customer demands directly. All the company needs to do is send the customer an email containing a link. By clicking on the link the customer has an overview of the repair options. Once the customer approves digitally ACL Airshop can start the repair process. As the company receives fifty work orders daily, this will save them lots of time.” Jacobsen: “Our customers can access, view and approve quotes themselves. In addition, they have access to certificates, repairs in progress, repair lead times and order history.”
The cloud based Star Flow solution, which is in use at ACL Airshop, is the first implementation of several roll outs within the ACL Airshop company. The Star Flow application has been adapted to the ACL Airshop workflow, but the solution itself can be used for several sectors. The solution is especially applicable to branches where service logistics activities take place, such as maintenance and repair tasks. Akdemir: “The application encourages partners to go for supply chain collaboration. Traceability is the central aspect, many tasks are automated, thus there is space to embrace process improvements. Star Flow supports in doing so. In addition, there is more time to improve customer relationships. The solution provides a positive feeling, or like we use to say: ‘you need to plan yourself a smile’.”
The roll out of the project has been smooth, according to the ACL Airshop General Manager. “Collaborating with Yellowstar was a pleasant experience. Daily contact kept things going. Their project team is very experienced concerning logistics processes. This implementation has so far been my best experience with any software vendor.”