11 March 2020
Acorn Industrial Services transform their distribution
operation with ‘PODStar’ Proof of
Delivery system from Touchstar Technologies
12th March 2020: Manchester, UK
Acorn Industrial Services Ltd is part of Axel Johnson
International, a global industrial group of more than 120 companies in 28
Supplying genuine, high quality engineering and maintenance
products, and with over thirty years’ experience in distribution, Acorn has
built an unrivalled reputation for outstanding customer service, product choice
and customer solutions.
declared strategy is “to continue leading the way, bringing the latest
technological innovations and industry solutions to our customers”. In
practice, Acorn supplements its core Microsoft software
technology with ‘best of breed’ specialist software. The aim is
always to enhance Acorn’s working practices and fine tune efficiency throughout
the distribution process, from stock management to logistics, resulting in a
superior customer experience.
an integral part of this process, Acorn sought a system that would optimise its
delivery operations. After an extensive and thorough examination of available
systems the Acorn management team selected the ‘PODStar’ Electronic Proof of
Delivery system from Manchester-based Touchstar Technologies.
PODStar system offers a planning tool that automates existing manual processes.
Using a custom API routine, Acorn can utilise up-to-date information to create
job runs and to allocate drivers and vehicles. Once a manifest has
been created it is then automatically sent out to the drivers remotely in the
field. Once downloaded the driver can receive their jobs and, ultimately, provide
electronic proof of delivery in real time.
Acorn delivery drivers are equipped
with smart phones with the handheld device used for both proof of delivery /
signature capture and tracking of the driver location. Back at the Acorn
depots, management can view a real-time update on a ‘jobs table’ and the
driver’s location, as well as additional data and the job status and
Warehouse Manager for Acorn
Industrial Services headed up the implementation team, working closely with the
business development and project management teams from Touchstar. He describes
how smoothly the implementation process went;
“Right from the first meeting I was
impressed how the Team at Touchstar firstly presented the product and secondly
how it worked. Team members were always willing to come and visit site for
meetings and demos with various members of Acorn’s Team, right up until we were
sure it was Podstar we wanted to go with.
We have only been using the system for
a short period of time but it has already proved to be an asset for customers
chasing POD’s and for our sales team locating the drivers on their deliveries
and being able to give customers an ETA’s for their deliveries.
The product itself is very easy to use
which very minimal driver training on the handhelds required. I have rolled the
system out to all of my drivers with very minimal disruption to the operation.
All the drivers like the ease of use on the PODStar app and several customers have
commented that they like how quickly they can get a POD sent directly to them
after the job is completed.
The work that Touchstar has done for
Acorn has been fantastic. We presented them with some feature requests that
they had not encountered before but they worked the issues and came up with
viable solutions to ensure the use of Podstar was as simple as possible for all
I would highly recommend this product
to anyone looking to move away from a paper-based delivery system.”