Business Case: R.M.I. Global Logistic Services

R.M.I.

R.M.I. Global Logistic Services is a worldwide operating organisation who acts as a forwarding agent for the transport of chemicals and foodstuffs. The transport of foodstuffs is carried out by R.M.I. Food Logistics and chemical transports by R.M.I. Chemical Logistics. From their headquarters based in the port of Rotterdam, they offer all-inclusive logistical solutions for the transport of chemicals and foodstuffs.

Motivation

When a client submits a transport order with R.M.I., they go looking for a fitting solution. The manner in which an order is submitted varies per client. Some of them send an order directly from their own ERP system, others use a Transport Management System (TMS).

All orders are collected by R.M.I. in their ROS ERP system. With a view on efficiency and cost reduction, R.M.I. chose to automate the order registration through EDI. This means that systems of trading partners can send an order directly to the ERP system of R.M.I. through different EDI links.

In order to ensure that all information flows of the different systems connect correctly to the own ERP system, integration specialist Copernicus was asked to assist. We are an experienced party in the logistics sector and have the expertise that is required for making the connections with various TMS systems.

Analysis

First, we started to identify all the required information flows between R.M.I. and its trading partners. In this phase, we identified to what extent the systems involved are accessible to make a connection.

The figure below shows a simplified overview of the different information flows. At its centre is our “Enterprise Service Bus”: the Niklas Integratie Platform.

 

RMI information flows

Fig. 1 Information flows R.M.I. – Trading partners

 

A client order is received by Niklas and forwarded to ROS in the proper format. When the order is confirmed by R.M.I., an electronic confirmation is sent to Niklas, which translates the notification and forwards it to the client’s system. R.M.I. can then arrange the transport with the transport companies it is connected to.

Development

When there was a clear view of all the necessary links, the development process was started. In this phase, mappings are made which read an incoming message or file, and which transform them to a required output format. The objective of the mapping is to make sure that an incoming message is transformed in such a way that it can be processed in an entirely automated manner by ROS. Of course, this also applies to outgoing messages.

We linked R.M.I. to the following Transport Management Systems:

 

Fig. 2 Transport Management Systems

 

Web Portal

During the developmentfase it became clear that a message from a client does not always contain all supplier specific information which is required by ROS to process the message. For example: ROS requests a specific tradings partner ID. Een handelspartner daarentegen verstuurt uit eigen naam en ziet geen reden om een ID aan haar berichten toe te voegen. Een incompleet bericht kan niet door ROS worden opgepakt.

To solve this problem, a certain amount of data enrichment is needed during the process. Before entering ROS, the client’s message must be given the right ID and/or other missing data must be added in order for it to be processed without any trouble in ROS. With a view on user-friendliness, we developed a special web portal.

 

R.M.I. web portal

Fig. 3 Web Portal

 

As soon as a message enters Niklas, the program checks a reference table within the web portal and missing values are automatically added/adjusted. Via the web portal, R.M.I. can supply this reference table with all the required information.

When a message enters with missing values that are unknown in the reference table, a notification mail is sent to R.M.I. They can then log in to the web portal, and add the missing values via a user-friendly interface. The next time the same message enters the system, the value is recognised and automatically added from the reference table.

Implementation

When the mappings were concluded, we, in consultation with R.M.I., started on the establishment of the information flows on our platform. The project is rolled out step-by-step per client. Before this happens, the links are tested extensively and the sent messages are validated. At this moment, the links with Carini and Transporeon are live. In the next step, the links with Kewill and Elemica will go live.

When all the links with trading partners are live and working properly, we will enter the next phase of the project. We will then create the links with the transport companies R.M.I. collaborates with. This way, the entire future process from transport order to the planning of the actual transport will be done via EDI.

Result

The transfer to EDI means that many actions that used to be done manually, are now executed automatically. This offers a high level of efficiency and a reduction of errors. For prospects who use Transporeon, Elemica, or Kewill, it has become more interesting to collaborate with R.M.I. The links have been developed, so a new link with one of these TMS systems can be produced quickly.

Managed EDI

Are you, just like R.M.I., looking for a partner who can link your systems to your trading partners? Please contact us by clicking on the button below, or by calling us directly at 023 565 6060. We are looking forward to explaining the possibilities for you, and how we can link you successfully to all your trading partners.