Truckstops, the popular routing and scheduling optimisation solution from Mapmechanics, now reflects the day-to-day requirements of real-world users even more closely. The latest version makes it easier for users to set up, apply and manage a range of configuration options and transfer data in and out of the system.
Truckstops is one of the world’s longest-established and most widely used vehicle routing and scheduling solutions, offering multi-drop, multi-route planning at an affordable price, fully configurable to work with each user’s specific operations, and supporting both dynamic day-to-day scheduling and longer-term fixed-route scheduling.
Particularly useful to those using Truckstops for day-to-day scheduling is the ability in the new version for users to make a global percentage change in the road speeds applied by the system. This is ideal, for instance, if there are widespread weather issues such as blizzards, heavy rain or high winds, or if traffic congestion is having a major impact on the speed of travel across the country.
This new feature augments Truckstops’ powerful existing road speed management capabilities. As standard, Truckstops is delivered with specific roads speeds applying to every road link and varying according to time to day. Users can also edit the system, applying speeds derived from time and distance matrices from sources such as GPS tracking of their own vehicle fleets.
However, the new global percentage speed editing feature enables users to apply “quick-fix” short-term modified speeds when more sophisticated solutions may not be needed.
Truckstops has long been noted for the ability it gives users to prioritise visits and to load product in a particular way, and now these processes are even easier. For instance, it might be necessary to enforce a rule stating that certain products must always be loaded in a refrigerated compartment, or that certain calls must come first in the journey (a visit to a multi-user pickup point, for example).
As more and more of these parameters are set by the user, it can be a challenge to manage them all, but in the latest version of Truckstops it is much quicker and easier to sort and apply them as required.
Moving data in and out of Truckstops is now easier too. A new feature helps users export routes conveniently in Excel spreadsheet format, so that they can be viewed, analysed and shared with colleagues who may not have access to Truckstops itself. Truckstops’ batch processing capability has also been enhanced by the introduction of a streamlined file import facility.
Reflecting the high priority now given by fleet operators to environmental issues, a useful new feature in Truckstops is its ability to calculate and display the emissions that vehicles will produce on the routes it has optimised.