Logistics service provider Smeets Ferry has found a software supplier on whom it dares to rely 100%: Simply Deliver. “They use a pay-per-use model where you only pay for a software component when it actually works,” says CEO Laurens Smeets. The first module, the Simply Converter, is now live and immediately delivers “tons of savings” to the company. And perhaps even more important: it brings peace of mind to the organization.

To deliver top quality and stay ahead of the competition, as a logistics service provider you have to keep innovating, says founder and CEO Laurens Smeets. “Trucks and trailers are replaced every four years, personnel receive extensive training every year and we invest heavily in our telematics and software systems. The Transport Management System that Smeets Ferry has been working with for more than twenty years has been adapted many times over the years to the changing circumstances and wishes of the company. “You have to respond to new market developments with your systems, but that has cost me an awful lot of money so far.

The annoying thing about IT is also that you never know in advance how much it will cost exactly and that it always turns out to be more expensive than expected

“We’ve really gained trust in the people of Simply Deliver.”

No startup costs

With Simply Deliver, Laurens Smeets claims to have found an IT supplier for the first time who really keeps grip on the costs. “They have cut their software into standard components that you can install plug&play from the cloud, without a long implementation time or high start-up costs. What’s more, the software is very simple and intuitive to use, so user training or a manual is hardly necessary. But the best part is that you only pay according to your usage “pay per use”. As long as the software doesn’t work the way you want it, you don’t pay a Euro and the pressure to fix it lies with the software house. For me, that’s the big difference with all other IT providers; you often have to spend thousands of euros before you’ve even seen a screen. EDI far too expensive The first module of Simply Deliver that Smeets Ferry uses is the ‘Simply Converter’, a tool for automatically converting and reading documents from an email to your own order management system. For a number of large customers Smeets uses EDI, but the majority of orders come in via email which included a PDF, Excel or Word file. “We can ask customers to deliver an order in a standardized way for us, but they often don’t feel like it at all and testing and implementing EDI does not have any priority of their IT departments”.

Quick payback

Laurens Smeets calculated that the investment in the Simply Converter was quickly payed back. “Previously, we had two people with us entering orders full-time and, inevitably, there were regular typing mistakes. The smallest mistake could have major consequences. Entering a reference number incorrectly before loading can cause a driver to be delayed for hours at a location. As a result, follow-up trips are also impacted and people are busy all day with rescheduling and dealing with irritated customers. With the converter we can significantly reduce these failure costs. We create peace of mind and make more useful use of our people who can focus on optimizing trips and preventing empty kilometers. What we save in this way probably runs into tons of Euro’s and leads to greater customer and staff satisfaction”.

“I believe in the philosophy of Simply deliver, it’s exactly what our market needs”

Next steps

Because the first experience was so good, Smeets is determined to start using other modules of Simply Deliver as well. The next one is the ‘tariff module’, which allows the company to quickly calculate the corresponding price when a transport quotation is requested. “The most important thing for me is that I have found a partner I can rely on with commitment.” The people at Simply Deliver come up with fresh ideas and think along with you. Your entire business depends on IT so you need to be sure that suppliers do what they promise. The pay-per-use model ensures that you only pay for something that works. And that’s the way it should be. When I buy a new truck I know in advance exactly what it can do and what it costs”.