Trust and commitment
Trust and commitment are vital components of any successful partnership, while sharing the same values and vision are equally important. Dennis Wetenkamp, CEO of AB Texel Group, says, “Both parties focus on their specialism and prefer to work together in partnerships. This commitment to each other provides a vital and fantastic basis for exploring opportunities for improvements, and then following up on them together.” As an agricultural specialist, AB Texel Group perfectly complements the services ForFarmers provides.
Control of the supply chain
Improving together means understanding your results and identifying where opportunities for improvement lie. Which is why work started on designing data dashboards soon after the agreement was signed. In the steering group, AB Texel Group and ForFarmers jointly translated the objectives from the partnership into clear KPIs. A baseline measurement was performed for this purpose, which is important if you want to know whether the desired results have actually been attained at a later stage.
Implementation in operational processes
Of course, data dashboards alone aren’t enough. Translating the results into specific activities within the operational framework is equally important. To achieve this, a weekly operational meeting with the planning departments from ForFarmers and Ab Texel Group takes place, during which dashboard analysis is a recurring agenda item. AB Texel Group’s data analysts participate in these meetings, to answer questions and make immediate adjustments to the dashboards. Through input from operations, the dashboards have been, and continue to be enhanced. Ron Kwakkelaar, Logistics Manager at ForFarmers: “The trick is to discover leads and opportunities that enable you to work together in a smarter and more efficient way. The data dashboards and multidisciplinary meetings help this process and provide insight into specific patterns.” ForFarmers has its own unrestricted account for data tooling, allowing them continuous access to the data sets.
It’s been several years since these changes were implemented and the results achieved together are evident. The amount of empty kilometres has been reduced and the load factor, time management and delivery performance have improved. Although at first, it took some time to get a firm grip on operational processes, says Bas Strijbosch, Director of AB Texel Feed Transport: “It takes a while before you can make the data your own and experiment with it, and actually have the courage to do so”. And this can only happen if there is absolute trust in the partnership and the expertise of the parties involved.