International software and consulting company Implico has expanded its leading tank farm administration system OpenTAS to include a Truck Operations Cockpit (TOC) module. Pilot customer TransTank confirms time savings and improved usability for tank farm planners.
TOC gives OpenTAS users in tank farms an overview of all key truck operation processes. Planners can now use just a single user interface to manage truck resource planning. Since the development process was preceded by extensive surveys conducted with refinery and tank farm customers, the present-day TOC now covers more than 90 percent of planners’ most common day-to-day tasks. Tank farm operator TransTank has now become the first company to deploy the tool for production use.
TOC: Simplifying processes for tank farm planners
To ensure that tank farm management runs smoothly, fast tank truck turnaround time in particular depends on an efficient set of processes. Resource planners routinely have to process a wide variety of information – such as load orders, hazard goods permits, driver authorizations and tank fill levels, plus meter and pipeline configurations. TOC pulls these items of data from OpenTAS, presenting them in a clear and easy-to-read dashboard. This means users have to deal with fewer input screens, get a one-page view of loading operations, and are informed proactively if problems occur. TOC also recommends solutions for critical situations.
Development driven by customer needs
With TOC, Implico’s software engineers had the aim of simplifying process presentation in OpenTAS. Due to this fact, the downstream specialists first took an in-depth look at the activities typically faced by planners in their day-to-day business. This resulted in a catalog of functions that are now available within TOC and which can be bundled and modified to match the specific needs of the customer’s site. “We continue to use innovation-driven development for OpenTAS,” explains Implico Managing Partner Michael Martens. “With Truck Operations Cockpit, usability for resource planners was the primary focus, combined with an interest in further streamlining the business processes.” Accordingly, software design for the Truck Operations Cockpit was led by Implico’s in-house Usability and User Experience unit, which cooperated closely with the consulting and software development departments.
Truck Operations Cockpit in use at TransTank
Resource planners at tank farm operator TransTank are already using TOC at its Nuremberg site. Implico’s longtime customer had completed the OpenTAS 5.0 release upgrade at the end of 2015 and was eagerly looking forward to the new Cockpit.
Benefits of Truck Operations Cockpit at a glance:
- A centralized workspace for release planners using a fully-automated tank car turnaround system, including all key functions
- At-a-glance, real-time monitoring of tank truck loading/unloading work
- Troubleshooting: Faults are identified and solutions recommended
- Much simpler to use, thanks to a major focus on usability
- Minimal onboarding and training requirements for new employees
- Modular design enables site-specific customizing
Truck Operations Cockpit: New dashboard for resource planners in OpenTAS