Fuel Oil News

Fuel Oil News June 2013

The home heating oil industry has a long and proud history, and Fuel Oil News has been there supporting it since 1935. It is an industry that has faced many challenges during that time. In its 77th year, Fuel Oil News is doing more than just holding

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D i s p at c h i n g & C o m m u n i c at i o n s Automated Dispatching for All Small companies can benefit from big-time technology By Debra Reschke-Schug M any fuel oil companies have Ken Kauffman, owner of Kauffman Gas. Photo courtesy of George Francy with ADD Systems. moved into automated dispatch- ing, but some think they are too small in size to switch to the new technologies available today. Not true, said Saul Cohen manager of the energy division for Cargas. "Anyone who's hesitant to make the investment should consider the value of fewer miles, better productivity, and less wear-andtear on the vehicles themselves," he said. Take a joint case study by Cargas Systems and Roadnet Technologies with their collaboration in helping Wilson Oil of Wallingford, Pa., a small heating oil and HVAC company. Wilson Oil wanted to update the company's manual method of routing their delivery trucks. Not unlike many other small heating oil companies, Wilson began each day printing out tickets, bursting them, filing them and letting drivers sequence their stop tickets themselves. Wilson reached out to Cargas, based in Lancaster, Pa., who referred them to Roadnet, headquartered in Townson, MD. "We wanted software that was userfriendly, scalable, and most of all, seamless, with close integration between delivery, truck level, routing, mapping, tracking, all the way to billing," said David O'Connell, president of Wilson Oil. Kauffman Gas trucks in Atglen, Pa. Photo courtesy of George Francy with ADD Systems. Paperless Steps – the Raven way ADD Systems' Raven goes through the delivery process in the following steps: Deliveries due are pulled, sorted and assigned for each driver. Optimized map-based routes are generated and dispatchers might tweak the path based on their knowledge of the area. Virtual "tickets" are downloaded auto- 34 mated to Raven overnight, or immediately, as needed. A "cheat sheet" manifest can be printed for the office and driver. Drivers take their handhelds and run through their route, printing an extended ticket upon completion. Delivery information is wirelessly June 2013 | FUEL OIL NEWS | www.fueloilnews.com uploaded in real-time. End-of-shift files are uploaded to the office computer at the end of the shift. Posting can be updated as soon as the shifts are uploaded. Invoices can be sent to customers the same day as posting, generating quick cash flow.

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