Optimal software support for logistics processes
Freight transport is a central economic factor and is steadily increasing in complexity due to rising demands for speed and flexibility. This makes adequate software support for logistics processes indispensable. inet-logistics GmbH of Austria provides a solution, and Software Competence Center Hagenberg (SCCH) helped to make an initial step toward optimizing their software.
Attributes of the inet Transportation Management System (TMS) are rapid implementation of customer-specific logistics requirements and connectivity to existing systems of logistics service providers.
The increasing scope of functionality and growing customer requirements necessitate the further development of the technical basis of the TMS. Based on its expertise in service-oriented architectures and in the implementation of business processes, the SCCH team analyzed the existing system. In workshops the technology utilized in the existing architecture was critically questioned in terms of its adequacy for the complex requirements of the application domain.
One suspenseful issue was the missing link between system documentation and business process description. Notations and designations differed between project teams with customer contact and software developers. As a solution, SCCH proposed a consistent documentation form based on the latest scientific developments (form charts).
An initial step in the long-range cooperation with inet-logistics was the evaluation of new technologies and concepts as a basis for further development. Then concepts and architectures were developed to support flexible implementation of such logistics products with state-of-the-art science and technology. Further, the known strengths of the existing implementation (e.g., rapid realization of customer-specific solutions) were enhanced.
In this project SCCH impressively demonstrated its strength in the combination of competencies in software engineering and business process modeling and the combination of these for system documentation.