January 8, 2003, 12:00 AM

Family Dollar uses the web to take control of its freight shipments

Family Dollar Stores is deploying web-based logistics software from Global Logistics Technologies to maintain real-time visibility of freight movements.


Web-based efficiency is hitting the road for Family Dollar Stores Inc., which is deploying web-based logistics software from Global Logistics Technologies Inc. to maintain real-time visibility of freight movements. The system enables the retailer to slash shipping costs by consolidating shipments into fewer truckloads. “This system will pay for itself within 12 months,” James W. Burns, vice president of transportation, tells Internet Retailer.

In the past, Family Dollar had to gather information on freight movements from several third-party logistics providers, a system that made it difficult to consolidate shipments to its chain of more than 4,500 discount stores across 41 states. With its G-Log Global Command and Control Center logistics application, or GC3, Family Dollar can now directly track reports of freight movements from each of its logistics providers.

Based on shipping parameters Burns and his staff input into the GC3 system, the system will automatically allocate truckloads to maximize capacity in each vehicle, resulting in fewer trucks carrying the same amount of material, Burns says. Family Dollar still has the option to manually override the system to optimize shipments, he adds.

Family Dollar’s logistics providers access the web-based GC3 system, where they receive shipping instructions and can input shipment updates, allowing Family Dollar to check if shipments are on schedule and carrying the correct products and quantities as set forth in the purchase order.

If demand from its stores changes from when a purchase order was issued, Burns says, Family Dollar can use the G-Log system to alert shippers to re-route shipments to different distribution centers or individual stores.


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