Vellex is a family owned and operated company that provides freight distribution and logistics services to customers across the eastern states of Australia. Established in 1985, the company has more than 30 years of service and experience in the sector.
Vellex prides itself on providing services to its clients with a focus on safety, consistency, reliability and accuracy. It has 400 staff and distribution depots in Adelaide, Brisbane , Melbourne, Sydney and Newcastle.
While growing consistently since its establishment, Vellex had adopted a range of IT systems to support its operations. Deployed at different times to meet specific needs, they lacked the flexibility and integration that the company required.
“We had a separate customer management system, warehouse management system and finance system in place,” says Managing Director Charles Vella. “While this approach had supported us over the years, we were keen to shift to a more modern platform.”
“Because of the age of the software, it was difficult to maintain and adapt to any changes with the company. It was also cumbersome to move information between systems which led to a lag when it came to reporting and gaining insight into our operations.”
Vella says there were also a range of manual and paper-based workflows across the company that he was keen to remove, including the usage of paper-based consignment notes by a number of large customers
“We could see that Infocomm had a solid track record in the industry and they displayed a thorough understanding of our business and what we were trying to achieve. They also stood out from the competition because they were large enough to deliver what we needed but not so large that we would simply become just another anonymous customer.”Charles Vella, Managing Director
About three years ago, a decision was taken to find a replacement application that could support all areas of the business. A number of options were examined and thorough due diligence completed on a shortlist of three before the final selection of Infocomm.
“We could see that Infocomm had a solid track record in the industry and they displayed a thorough understanding of our business and what we were trying to achieve,” says Vella. “They also stood out from the competition because they were large enough to deliver what we needed but not so large that we would simply become just another anonymous customer.”
He says the Infocomm solution was also appealing because it was based on the Microsoft .Net platform and an SQL database. This would ensure it could continue to be evolved and additional capabilities added in the future.
Working closely with the Vellex IT team, Infocomm configured and deployed the software over a three-month period. Significant customisation was undertaken to ensure it could effectively support the company’s operations across its administration team, its depots and the delivery fleet.
Thorough staff training was also completed to ensure all members could quickly come up to speed and make use of the features and capabilities of the software.
Once the new software was operational, significant business benefits quickly became evident. Manual processes were removed and workflows streamlined across the company.
“Rather than having three different applications doing different things, we now have a single platform supporting all areas,” says Vella. “This means that we can readily obtain a real-time perspective on what is happening. We can see the status of deliveries and how things are tracking within our depots.”
With a single platform in place, there was also no longer any need to manually transfer data between different applications. This helped to significantly reduce the administrative overhead and assist in reporting and month-end accounting activities.
“We are also now able to offer our customers the ability to arrange freight dispatches via an internet portal. This removes the need for them to manually address packages and fill out paper consignment notes.”
Vella says that, in the three years that Infocomm has been in place within the company, consignment volumes have grown from around 2000 per day to more than 5000. While the number of delivery drivers and warehouse staff has increased over that time, it has not required any expansion of the administrative team.
“With the same number of people in the office we are able to deal with a more than doubling in our freight volumes,” he says. “This would not have been possible without the Infocomm platform being in place.
Vella says there are still significant features within the Infocomm software that are yet to be put to use, so he expects further business benefits to be realised in the future. One area of focus is the rollout of mobile devices to warehouse staff and delivery drivers that will remove the need for any paper-based documentation.
“We’re always on the hunt for ways to make our operations more efficient and Infocomm will continue to support us in this task,” he says. “We now have in place a long-term partner who will deliver value to the business for many years to come.”