For many companies and individuals engaged in haulage work, the idea of reducing greenhouse gasses while cutting costs at the same time is something of a ‘Nirvana’ objective. |
Roadblocks Getting To Nirvana
Unfortunately, the options involved in trying to get there are so complicated and numerous that they’re, by their very nature, intimidating.
Even worse are those things called the “inter-dependencies” between these various options and good ideas. This is essentially the tendency of a laudable initiative in one area actually proving to have an unforeseen and undesirable knock-on effect in another domain.
If you don’t know what you’re doing, it’s perfectly possible to implement a positive green policy in one area only to find that it causes negative effects in another - meaning that overall you’re now worse off (in green terms) than you were before.
Perhaps you’re gifted and hold several PhDs in various scientific subjects. You might also, at the same time, be a fully qualified cost accountant - as well as a haulage work specialist!
However, if that’s not quite the case then you’re going to need help in understanding just which green options might work for you both environmentally and economically. That’s where the new SRF Optimiser comes in.
The SRF Optimiser – Making Things Easy
The SRF (Sustainable Road Freight) Optimiser is, in essence, a computer program designed for the haulage work sector and related industries.
What it does is to look at certain aspects of your business once you’ve input them, and then offer advice on the positive and negative effects of implementing change. It also handles those inter-dependencies for you. You can make a single change to a parameter to see the total effect of it throughout your organisation in both green and financial terms.
That perhaps sounds a little otherworldly, so let’s consider an example.
Let’s assume you wonder if switching to bio-diesel would be better for the environment but you aren’t sure what the economic impact on your business would be. All you need to do is to enter that into the SRF Optimiser, and out will pop the answer based on your business.
Another illustration might be how much fuel you’d save if you required your drivers to check their type pressures regularly. Yes, it would add some non-productive time to their schedules each period and that would be a cost to you, but would it pay for itself in terms of fuel saved?
This software can provide the answers.
An Oracle Covering All Situations
This is a fantastic step forward and it allows fleet managers and the decision makers within a haulage work company to operate based on facts using ‘what-if’ modelling rather than guesswork and hunches.
Critics will say that such modelling can never be comprehensive because there are too many unknowable variables. For example, if you’re just nowhere near a Bio-Diesel outlet and have to go and find it, then your costs of switching may be slightly higher than someone else’s.
Even so, this is a fantastic app and one that a typical haulage company will want to be looking at closely.
Norman Dulwich is a Correspondent for Haulage Exchange, the leading online trade network for the road transport industry. Connecting logistics professionals across the UK and Europe through their website, Haulage Exchange provides services for matching haulage work with available drivers. Over 4,000 transport exchange businesses are networked together through their website, trading jobs and capacity in a safe 'wholesale' environment.
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