What a YMS System Should and Should Not Be Responsible For

Written by: 
Posted on: 
January 25, 2023

Trucks in large yard using yard management system

A Yard Management System is a full-scale software solution that can streamline processes, provide real-time visibility, eliminate the need for a middleman, and optimize productivity that ensures an efficient operation. However, it is not a system that has all the answers, nor is it a system that should be responsible for everything. In this article, we will confirm what a YMS is responsible for, and clarify what it does not do.

Yard Management Challenges in a Nutshell

Yard management, no matter the size of the organization, causes challenges. Here are some of the biggest challenges yard management may face daily and how it affects the overall operations:

  • Lack of Trailer and Shipment Visibility – Yard staff lack valuable insight into when a trailer and/or shipment enters the yard, when it unloads/loads, and when it leaves. This problem causes insufficiency that will cause gate congestion, improper use of the yard and its resources, and incur unexpected costs.

  • Procedural Misalignment – When processes are not digitally managed, stakeholders are unable to see what is happening in real time at all access points of the yard. This results in reactive operations, where there are inefficiencies everywhere and generate higher wait times, more costs, longer delays, and negative customer and client relationships.

  • Inefficient Yard Jockey Operations – When there is a lack of insight into yard operations, that results in a lack of yard jockeys successfully checking operations for safety and compliance. Without safety and compliance, it results in more violations and charges due to poor planning.

  • Improper Scheduling during Pick-Up and Drop-Off Times - With inaccurate scheduling, gate operators, yard jockeys, and drivers will experience frustration, longer wait times, lowered dependability, and a higher risk of commodities being lost or held for longer periods of time - resulting in yard expenses.

  • Detention & Demurrage Fees and Other Expenses – With delays, come fees. Based on how long containers remain discharged before moved out to terminals, yard managers can incur additional costs they didn’t originally budget for.

  • Lack of Communication When Obstacles Come Up – When there is a lack of visibility or management in the yard, there is minimal communication to resolve problems when they appear.

How a YMS Fits In

A yard management system is the perfect piece to the puzzle since it can both run seamlessly on its own and successfully integrates with other software to promote a full-scale operations process, including Warehouse Management Systems (WMS), Transportation Management Systems (TMS), and ERP systems (Enterprise Resource Planning). Together, YMS becomes a unified solution that amplifies the following benefits:

  • Enhances overall visibility.
  • Streamlines asset management flow.
  • Reduces superfluous spending.
  • Conducts carrier analysis.
  • Enhances communication across the yard between management, jockeys, and drivers.
  • Tracks trailers and products for efficient loading and unloading.
  • Oversees incoming trucks at the gate to the dock and ensures proper scheduling for both dock and yard appointments.
  • Improves security and boosts operational efficiency.

How You Can Support Your YMS for Yard Operations

Keep in mind that although YMS can be the magical “end all be all” for your yard, unfortunately, it can’t resolve every issue out of the system on its own. Problems that may arise may include:

  • Improper data entry
  • Employee scheduling errors
  • Poor reputation management for your business
  • Personal scheduling errors
  • Identifying problems before they happen
  • Maintaining driver accountability

This is due to the harsh reality that software, such as yard management systems, can’t solve everything that may be problematic in your operation. Users may still make errors, other systems that you use for transportation or warehouse management can feed inaccurate data to other software systems, certain employees or systems are more accountable than others, and often times systems are only as good as the people who use them, which is where proper training and application comes in. Calculators are a good example here. Calculators know tons of formulas and can do math in an instant. However, if the user doesn’t know how to use one or the proper way to input an equation, they aren’t going to get the right answer. In short, yard management software is not responsible for things that exist outside the scope of the system or its integration capabilities.

Allow Our YMS to Help Your Yard Operations

A user of YardView Yard Management System

With more than 20 years of industry experience, YardView’s YMS software solution provides the extra assistance you need to drive productive operations. Our team of leading experts crafted an innovative yard management solution that solves real yard management problems and optimizes the business inside and out. When integrated with other systems such as WMS, TMS, and ERP systems, your entire business process is ensured to significantly improve across the board. Additionally, our technicians are based in the United States and go above and beyond to deliver exceptional response and turnaround time. By offering 24/7 support, our trained experts will answer the phone when you call and are equipped to address and solve problems quickly and efficiently. Contact us with any of your questions so we may provide you with the best solution for your operations. Schedule a demo of our software today by visiting us today.