Using the Slot Booking app integrated with their kiosk system empowered the handler at Brussels Airport’s cargo hub to smoothen super peaks, reduce stress for acceptance staff, eliminate waiting time and plan staff more efficiently in view of actual demand.
“We improved our acceptance process a 100% and have now full control of the entire flow.”
Swissport Cargo Services is the first ground handler at Brussels Airport’s cargo hub to use the Slot Booking app together with their kiosk system for self registration. The introduction of Slot Booking helped the ground handler to smoothen peaks, reduce stress for operational staff, provide better service and plan staff more efficiently.
“We can better channel activity in view of capacity. We still face peak times, but have been able to eliminate the so-called ‘superpeaks’.”
“Having visibility on who comes when allows us to allocate our staff smarter. In particular during off-peak times, we can now better ensure the required amount of resources.”
“We improved our acceptance process a 100%. Drivers who use the Slot Booking app are prioritized: they don’t stand in line and are served right away. A digital registration flow (Kiosk + Slot Booking) speeds up the process and reduces admin.”
“As we have visibility on who comes when, there is less discussion on who is to be served first. This makes it a lot easier for our acceptance staff.”
Says Lucas Deschouwer, Operation Support Manager: “One of the key benefits of the Slot Booking app is that we now have better visibility on who is coming when. Peak times used to be very challenging, with all trucks arriving at exactly the same time, leading to long waiting times, heavy discussions on who is to be served when and hence a lot of stress for our acceptance staff. Today, we can better channel activity in view of capacity. We still face peak times, but have been able to eliminate the so-called ‘superpeaks’. For example, we’ll still see a lot of activity between 7 and 10.30 a.m., but trucks will no longer all show up at 7 a.m.."
Tom Lepage, Quality Manager, adds: “We have improved our acceptance process a 100% and have now full control of the entire flow. The acceptance zone has been closed off, with a priority lane for drivers who arrive with a booked slot. Drivers very quickly understood and adopted the system and accept the order in which they are being served. This has dramatically reduced stress for our acceptance staff.”
The digital flow of the Slot Booking app and kiosk registration system has accelerated the acceptance process - reducing admin and paperwork. Drivers now first register at the kiosk, which is fully integrated with BRUcloud and the Slot Booking app and automatically shows his/her booked slot(s). The role of the acceptance staff is focussed on coordination: they confirm the order in which drivers are served (as per their booked slots) and with clear visiblity on the planning can easier assess and decide when to handle ad hoc deliveries or pick ups in between planned slots.
Having visibility on planned pick ups and deliveries makes it also easier to organize manpower in line with actual demand. Tom Lepage: “In particular off peak and during night shifts this allows us to better plan our resources, so we always have the right amount of staff available to ensure our customers quality service.”
According to Lucas Deschouwer “the Slot Booking app is a very intuitive, easy-to-use system. In just a couple of weeks the system was accepted and we had all users up and running. Training was provided to all people involved: we explained how the system works and why we are using it and coached people on the fly - both our internal staff and the drivers. During the pilot phase, we needed to adjust a couple of practical things - for example, we forgot to take into account the change in shifts in the planning, which resulted in a 15 minutes gap, but this was very easy to adjust.”
“The Slot Booking app is a very intuitive, easy-to-use system.”
Leveraging their experience with implementing and using the Slot Booking app, Lepage and Deschouwer recommend handlers who are about to start with the Slot Booking app to take the following into account:
Start small, with a limited number of gates and scale once the process is duly validated. Pay enough attention to finetune the administrative flow.
Involve the right people in training
Involve both management and operational staff. Ensure enough people with authority are present to support, accompany and supervise during the training. Get involved yourself. And repeat where necessary.
Start manually, then activate the kiosk
When integrating the Slot Booking app with a kiosk system, start with a manual registration process and activate the kiosk once people are used to the process. It helps installing the right operational habits, for example to always first check the planning during registration.
Drivers with a booked slot enjoy priority treatment
"We are very much looking forward to integrate the Slot Booking app with the Freight Management app, another landside management app on the BRUcloud platform, which will give us even more granular visibility on what freight will be picked up and delivered when and by whom. This will enable us to work in a fully pro-active mode, preparing all goods in advance, which will allow us to handle more freight and offer our customers an even better and faster service. Also, in 2021 we will start operating from our new warehouse facilities, which will increase our overall capacity and means we’ll be able to make more Slot Booking gates available."
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