BESPOKE SOLUTIONS- CASE STUDIES
TAG Active, the latest Play Revolution
Tag Active is an arena based game from Play Revolution designed to test strategy, speed, agility, awareness and bravery. TAG active promotes fitness, fun and competition.
The Arena itself contains a complicated structure of inter-connected activity areas. Each area contains challenges that require a mixture of physical and mental agility. The arena is split into separated zones, permitting enhanced player distribution and capacity management.
Hidden throughout the arena and within the activities are a large number of LED RFID readers (Designed by Codegate) called TAG's.
The TAG’s are controlled via a Codegate computer system and glow in different colours corresponding to a pre-determined points system. Points are collected by players wearing an RFID wristband. When a wristband is located onto a TAG’s light source, a point’s value is allocated to the specific player’s wristband. As the player identifies and reaches more TAG’s the players score escalates.
The first installation in East Kilbride uses 129 TAG's (RFID Readers), handles 120 players per hour and is run by only 4 staff.
Read about our recent installation at Flip Out Basingstoke
Speedy deliveries just got speedier
Hire specialist Speedy Services has rolled out a new mobile delivery solution developed by Codegate replacing a labour intensive, admin heavy, part-paper based system. Since it was paper based any shortages or last minute changes to a delivery order had to be dealt with by paper trail in the back office, which could make it difficult for larger customers to keep a corresponding tally on equipment hired and costs.
The new solution is entirely software based, running on Zebra TC55 rugged smart phones provided for each delivery driver. The software integrates directly and in 'real time' with Speedy's Microsoft Dynamics AX business system, eliminating the need for paperwork and therefore drastically reducing the level of administration required to process orders and deliveries into invoices.
The new software pushes delivery jobs from AX through to a planning portal from where they can be built into route plans for each driver. All orders are itemised down to line level, allowing last minute changes and shortages to be dealt with immediately and sent automatically to the back office software before the invoices are raised. Both Speedy and clients therefore benefit from invoicing which is more accurate and easier to tally. Customers also benefit from an automatic electronic notification when orders have been loaded 'out for delivery' and when theirs is the next destination on the route.
The same TC55 mobile device is loaded with additional integrated software from Codegate to allow the drivers to check their vehicles at the start of the day and report any non-critical defects immediately, without paperwork, prior to starting their deliveries. Corrective work can then be scheduled in. The checking solution also applies to any additional assets linked to the vehicle such as trailers. Additional mobile software is provided for handling traffic accidents, health & safety incidents and DVSA checks in real time, without any paperwork. At any such incident the software automatically captures the date, time and location allowing the driver to concentrate on recording relevant information such as third party driver details, photographs (which can be annotated) and sketches. Since no paperwork is involved any subsequent actions such as claims can be processed quicker and more efficiently, directly leading to savings in insurance costs and reduced administrative burden.
As a result of going paperless both Speedy and its customers are benefitting from the time savings derived from a more efficient order administration system, with reduced queries and disputes on both sides.
BAM/Crossrail Waste Transfer System
Including ANPR, Barrier control, weigh bridge and camera integration.
The Bam Nuttall Van Oord Joint Venture (BNVO JV) team used Codegate’s electronic waste transfer note system to manage the transportation of materials from 27 Crossrail excavation sites across London to the site at Docklands Transfer Station (DTS).On receipt and after testing the materials were moved by boat to Wallasea Island.
Codegate’s tracking system comprised two parts; a web portal and a handheld app with mobile printer.
Every vehicle had to pass through 4 tracked stages – booking, dispatch, arrival and completion, when the vehicle has delivered the load at DTS and has been issued with a Transfer Receipt by the operators at the DTS weighbridge facility on exiting the site).
Each waste producing contractor was equipped with a GPRS enabled handheld, which automatically downloaded bookings for the site each day, allowed the dispatcher to enter load information, take photos and print a waste transfer and dispatch note, used to verify the load and vehicle details on arrival at the DTS.
At the DTS Automatic Number Plate Recognition (ANPR) confirmed the correct vehicle and opened the access barrier.
Actual journey time was automatically compared to predicted journey time and the original front of vehicle photo reviewed. The Waste Transfer Note was passed to a central store and made available, subject to permissions, to the generating contractor, Crossrail and BNVO management via the web portal.
Working with Zebra reseller Jade Solutions Codegate developed an automated RFID data collection system to instantly track the movement of each trailer entering or leaving a depot, sending that information directly into Gist’s Enterprise system. Each trailer RFID tags fixed to each side allowing the software to derive direction of movement. Following a successful trial the solution was rolled out across the UK in just six months.
GIST Logistics - Trailer Tracking
The supply chain company operates from 11 regional depots across the UK with over 1,000 trailers transporting goods for major customers including Marks & Spencer. These trailers are subject to annual vehicle tests enforced by the government body, then known as VOSA. When trailers were due for inspection it was proving difficult to locate them This was also leading to costly spot hires to maintain trailer availability, especially at peak seasonal times such as Christmas.
Dangerous Goods Conveyor Tracking
The Civil Aviation Authority (CAA) enforce UK legal requirements for the carriage of dangerous goods by air. In order to address these requirements a leading logistics provider needed to identify and track packages containing particular dangerous goods that might be routed by air - for example lithium batteries, nail varnish, aerosols, perfumes and other liquids. This ideally needed to be done at the time the goods were passing through the x-ray security screening process without the need to open any bags or packages.
The tracking system needed to be completely non-intrusive such that no additional manpower would be required and there would be no reduction in throughput at its air freight sorting and screening centres. Furthermore, local IT infrastructure was not available to transfer collected data back to a central system.
Codegate designed and built an RFID reading system that could be installed in front of the x-ray machine, together with a display fitted next to the main x-ray image screens.
At the start of the shipping process packages containing dangerous goods would be marked with a UHF Gen 2 RFID tag. Each tag was uniquely identified in accordance with a GS1 numbering format. As containers of mixed freight were fed into the x-ray machine the front end RFID reader would pick up the number of individual RFID IDs found on packages within the container. As the container moved into the x-ray chamber that number was displayed next to the x-ray screens enabling the screener to quickly verify it against the number of visible dangerous goods packages. If there was a discrepancy the container could be set aside to remove any dangerous goods packages that were not correctly labelled.
The RFID reader was housed in a protective enclosure with a single board computer, GPRS router and other electronics. Data could therefore be sent to the cloud via a mobile phone network. It also allowed Codegate to access the computer remotely in order to carry out diagnostics and software updates.
Wyevale Garden Centres
Mobile Stock Taking, Mobile Label Printing, Receipting, Order creation PLU Microsoft AX integration.
Codegate developed and continue to support a multi-functional solution which can be used by non-technical garden centre staff in a variety of indoor and outdoor locations. Deployed over an estate of over 1,000 Zebra portable terminals and Toshiba mobile printers the solution encompasses two-way data communications between the hand held terminals / printers and the head office’s retail system.
River Island - Wearable Stock Picking
River Island, the successful fashion retailer, has over 200 outlets in the UK and a growing number of franchisees operating overseas.
Codegate's picking software delivers the picking instructions from the mainframe to the mobile terminals, displaying the pick requirements in a "pick walk" sequence. The solution utilises wearable laser scanning terminals linked to a back-end enterprise system. The mobile hardware consist of a compact terminal worn on the forearm and a ring scanner which fits on the index finger with a thumb operated micro-switch. Over 100 units were rolled out to handle hanging garment and flat goods picking, as well as despatch and loading confirmation.
Now 18 years old, the relationship with River Island continues to flourish, with Codegate providing hardware and maintenance on fixed and cordless bar code scanners, Zebra wearable scanners and computers and label printers.
Funded by DEFRA, and managed by the Environment Agency, Codegate supplied a specially customised version of its "mobileworker" workforce automation software to capture the relevant data electronically and store it on secure servers, replacing the paper-based scheme.
The successful completion of the trial led to the tender and procurement of the national electronic WTN tracking solution in use today.
Electronic waste transfer note development
As part of the Waste Crime Innovation Programme (WCIP), an ’Electronic Duty of Care’ trial was devised by the Environment Agency and developed by Codegate to evaluate the viability of a national Electronic Waste Transfer data collection solution to replace the previous inefficient paper-based system. The pilot system was trialled by six waste companies in South-East England, using mobile computer technology and a web-based tracking system to create and maintain electronic Waste Transfer Notes (WTNs).
Data is collected by the Stock-piler and Spreader using a Panasonic Ultra Mobile PC (UMPC) with touch screen technology. All on-screen controls were sized to be ‘finger friendly’. Collected data is sent back to the server automatically, with the ‘store and forward’ architecture designed to cope with intermittent losses of GPRS connection. GPS tracking and spread rate data are used to optimise the local spreading yields and store an accurate record for each farm against permitted levels. The resulting improvements in STW cake dispersals meant the company achieved payback within one year of deployment.
Optimised Nitrate Distribution
As Processed waste, known as ‘cake’, is a by-product of sewage treatment works (STWs). It is of great value to farmers as nitrogen-rich fertiliser, but the level of nitrogen content varies widely between STWs. It is in the interest of both Water Company and Farmer to ensure the maximum allowable amount of nitrogen is delivered and applied to each farm.
Codegate was awarded a contract to develop a mobile based solution to monitor and to record the nitrogen content, delivery and spread of cake from STW to field.
Jobs could then be pushed out via a mobile gateway to the field-based PDAs, enabling the driver to capture job details, vehicle data and working hours electronically. The completed information was transmitted via a mobile data network to the central reporting portal. Extensive use of mapping makes it easy for CSG to monitor, in real time, where its vehicles are and what the current status of each job is.
Mobile Job Allocation & Tracking
Waste management specialist CSG required a better method of tracking vehicles and organising jobs, as their paper-based system was becoming burdensome. Codegate was appointed to help automate the process, focusing on the distribution and collection of electronic jobs / tickets to CSG’s fleet of 60 sewage tankers.
Codegate focused on two key aspects - providing a ticket allocation system and providing a proof of collection. A planning portal was developed to interface to CSG’s existing accounting system to acquire the initial job details.
Since the solution rolled out, CSG has benefitted from rich electronic data content that integrates with their existing accounting systems. CSG’s clients are kept up to date, receiving confirming emails at different stages of the collection service.
All PDAs were deployed with remote device management software, so that Codegate’s support services can efficiently monitor performance and fix issues without it being necessary to have units returned. Codegate’s support portal also allows issues to be logged by CSG 24hr/7. This is further backed up by a technical help line.
Tracking Automotive Test Equipment
As part of its research and development program, a midlands-based leading UK car manufacturer sends vehicles filled with instrumentation to all corners of the globe to collect performance data under extreme motoring conditions. They needed to reduce testing down-time caused by instrumentation availability issues and failures, especially prevalent with test probes and leads. Codegate proposed a cost-effective tracking solution using RFID tags and mobile computers, and was duly awarded the contract.
Due to the nature of the vehicle test programmes the instrumentation assets are often away from the central store for months at a time, in areas without cell phone coverage. To keep costs to a minimum the mobile software was batch based, and rugged-cased UHF RFID ‘hard tags’ were provided, suitable for fixing on or off metal surfaces, capable of operating in extreme levels of heat, cold and humidity.
The mobile software was developed to run on a Zebra rugged hand-held terminal (HHT) with integral UHF RFID reader. The first task was to tag all instrumentation and test leads. Only two different tag formats were needed to cover all items. An additional RFID tag was fitted to each test vehicle. Prior to shipping, each vehicle was loaded with test instrumentation. The HHT was then used to inventory-check each vehicle in just a few seconds. From that point the HHTs could be used to audit any vehicle, anytime, anywhere, including on return, to highlight missing or damaged items. This enabled test equipment shortages to be managed more effectively, reducing down time, improving availability and overall asset utilisation.
Codegate developed the solution to work on a Zebra rugged hand-held terminals (HHT), and after extensive user trials the solution was delivered on time and within budget. The solution meant the company could significantly reduce the cost of transaction processing, reduce the number of processing errors and invoice queries, and reduce the lead time from completion of a hire job to dispatch of customer invoice. It provided clear relevant electronic data, including recording proof of hire, timesheets, and job allocation.
Electronic Proof of Hire & Timesheets
A leading UK specialist crane hire company operates over 500 mobile cranes from 28 depots across the country. With a continuous expansion program their paper-based systems for recording proof of hire and operator time sheets had become inefficient and time consuming. Against stiff competition Codegate was awarded the contract to digitise the whole process, enabling jobs to be deployed electronically to drivers, capturing signatures for work completed, and providing a streamlined electronic operator time sheet solution. All collected data was to integrate seamlessly with the company’s existing ERP system.