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Case Study: xTablet Streamlines Operations for Heniff Transportation & Logistics

Case Study: MobileDemand and PeopleNet streamline operations for Heniff Transportation Systems Liquid bulk carrier anticipates savings of roughly $1,150,000 per year.

Heniff Transportation Systems is one of the top 20 liquid bulk carriers in the United States. The Chicago-based company operates terminals in Illinois, Texas, Tennessee, Pennsylvania and Louisiana and handles roughly 30 percent hazardous and 70 percent non-hazardous materials.

In 2010, Heniff was utilizing an older fixed mounted fleet management system for its onboard computing and mobile communications. According to Heniff’s Director of Information Technology Joe Neal, “The system was plagued with problems. There were consistent hardware and software issues, and the existing system wasn’t truly meeting Heniff’s business needs. In addition, the bouncing generated inside the cab was causing the units to fail.” This began to lead to customer service and support issues. Neal knew it was time for a change.

The company still needed a way to track shipments and provide real-time delivery status to its customers. In addition to an onboard system for truck monitoring, Heniff wanted a portable computer for truck inspections, proof of delivery and other mobile applications. The system also needed to be reliable and provide near 100% uptime, which meant it had to be rugged. That’s when Neal and his team turned to PeopleNet, a leading provider of onboard computing and mobile communication solutions, and MobileDemand, the nation’s leading provider of rugged tablet PCs in the transportation industry.

The Customer Challenge

Neal wanted to deploy a system that would enable Heniff to provide its customers with accurate, real-time information on loads and scheduling. In addition, he wanted a tablet that was portable, one that could be used for data collection at customer sites. He knew that this would reduce administrative processes and streamline business operations to improve Heniff’s bottom line. Enterprise-ready, reliable tablets that offered his business more productivity were a must.

transportation tablet pc logistics peoplenet mobiledemand“We recognized that everything was going portable, and we really wanted to have a rugged unit that would enable us to take it out of the truck and have customers actually sign for shipments in real time.”

“We quickly realized that the PeopleNet solution which included the MobileDemand tablet PC really fit the bill. The device is perfect. It is rugged, has rubberized corners, is very sturdy, and fully portable,” Neal says. Holding up to the real-world conditions, both inside and outside of the truck, was high on everyone’s list at Heniff. As Heniff Director of Operations Scott Templeman recalls, “We looked at a lot of systems out there. The MobileDemand devices seemed to fit best. They could be mounted in the cab and withstand the shock and vibration. Then they could be used outside of the truck without having to worry about failures from drivers dropping them.”

Plus, Heniff operates in several locations so it was also important that the tablets be able to withstand both high and low temperatures. “The tablets themselves are used in many different climates. In winter in Chicago it gets down to zero degrees, even10 F degrees below, and every time the driver goes to the truck, starts it, and takes a few minutes to warm it up the MobileDemand tablet runs, absolutely the way it should. In the Gulf Cost, it really heats up. It could get as high as 115-120 F degrees inside the truck. The driver gets in, starts the truck, cools it down for a few minutes and the tablet works,” Templeman continues.

Continue reading to learn how MobileDemand and PeopleNet are helping Heniff Transportation Systems Liquid bulk carrier save roughly $1,150,000 per year.

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