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NewsTechnology

Onfleet wins the first annual RTech supply chain innovation award

 (IMAGE: RILA)
(IMAGE: RILA)

Onfleet won the first annual RTech supply chain innovation award for its online dashboard application. The application’s software assists businesses to manage in-house deliveries, as well as managing outsourced last-mile deliveries. The application visualizes the supply chain for customers and optimizes delivery routes for carriers. It also considers a range of constraints through its algorithm to improve supply chain efficiency.   

The RTech supply chain innovation award was announced at the 2019 LINK retail supply chain conference in Orlando.

Initially, 50 companies were considered for the award in recognition of their innovative platforms enhancing the retail supply chain. There were seven finalists selected including Bell & Howell, Dematic, DHL (FWB: DPW), FourKites, Kindred, Onfleet and Shyft. Awards were presented to the first, second and third place winners.

Onfleet, based in San Francisco, specializes in last-mile delivery management. It has assisted in over 30 million deliveries, tracked over 100 million miles of deliveries and is present in over 90 countries. Khaled Naim, Onfleet’s co-founder and chief executive officer, accepted the award on behalf of the company.

DHL won second place for its carton and parcel optimization solution. The solution manages shipment packaging to increase the utilization of each carton and reduce the amount of empty space being shipped, which can sometimes triple the cost of fulfillment. Adrian Kumar, vice president of solutions design at DHL North America, accepted the award.

Shyft won third place for its workforce management application. The application helps supply chains manage workforce labor shifts to reduce absenteeism, currently by 60 percent. It schedules workforce shifts at distribution centers without using phone calls or emails. Chris Pitchford, vice president of workforce solutions at Shyft, accepted the award.

Additionally, Bell & Howell won the retailers’ choice award, reflecting the industry favorite among the supply chain innovation award finalists. Bell & Howell won the award for its pickup tower system through a vote among retailers present at LINK. The pickup tower facilitates automated, self-service in-store pickup of retail products.  

LINK hosted a series of short pitches made by the RTech award finalists on February 25. The pitches provided the opportunity for the finalists to present their innovative solutions to challenges in the retail supply chain. Following the pitches, a select committee of retail supply chain executives chose the winners.

According to the Retail Industry Leaders Association’s (RILA) website, there were five areas of retail innovation the committee considered when deciding the RTech Awards.

  • Customer experience – how can retailers optimize their customer experience and what technology can improve their rapid fulfilment?

  • Internal operations – how can retailers optimize their supply chain recruitment processes, increase retention and manage their labor availability.

  • Leveraging data – how can retailers leverage big data and predictive/prescriptive analytics to offer a responsive, adaptive and flexible supply chain?

  • Automation – how can retailers utilize automation through artificial intelligence and machine learning to optimize store replenishment and last-mile delivery?

  • Supply chain management – how can retailers improve accuracy through better management, allocation and transportation tracking?

Through the RTech award event at LINK, the winners and finalists received the benefit of broad industry exposure. The finalists’ pitches were made to over 1,500 retail supply chain executives, the largest gathering of its kind. Finalists were also given the opportunity to interact with retail executives during the conference’s expo experience. Retail and supply chain trade press were also present, allowing finalists and winners to present their pitches beyond LINK’s supply chain audience.

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