SMART Solution Transforms
the Traditional Scrap Metal Industry
Vinning (formerly known as SvenskaSkrot) is a prominent player in the scrap metal industry in Sweden. It wanted to incorporate IT systems that could fuel its vision to become the largest scrap metal collection in the country. Allion Technologies designed a comprehensive IT system to meet Vinning’s end-to-end business needs. Today, Vinning operates seamlessly on a plug-and-play IT model.
Problem: Manual Operations and IT Systems at Primitive Stage
Vinning believes that scrap recycling plays a vital role in the circular economy. There are hundreds of local companies in Sweden that collect scrap metal and transform it into valuable resources. However, the entire industry is fragmented and operates traditionally. Vinning was looking for a smart and sustainable solution that could fulfill the following goals:
• Bring innovation in the scrap metal industry
• Meet the demands of future
• Leverage the expertise and experience of local players
• Reduce the carbon footprint on the planet
This seemed easier said than done. Vinning itself had under-invested IT systems and managed with single software to manage its operations. Right from transactions to inventory management, the company relied on manual paperwork and records. These processes were time-consuming and ineffective due to the manual way of working.
Given its ambitious plans of growth and acquisition, Vinning wanted process automation and a uniform IT system to replace manual management.
Solution: A SMART Overhaul of Existing Manual System Through Modern Technology
Vinning approached Allion Technologies to revamp and upgrade its existing IT operations. Allion Technologies recommended developing a unified solution to meet all business goals. Vinning agreed to implement a modern technology system driven semi-centralised and fully-centralised role-based scalable software system. Vinning also decided to adopt a system that it could use via portable devices such as Android and iOS mobile phones and tablets.
Allion Technologies named this cloud-based solution as SMART. It was designed to:
• Automate, streamline and centralise day-to-day operations
• Monitor metal collection
• Give ground-level check and visibility
The SMART solution comprised of three integrated applications - one mobile application and two web-based applications:
• Mobile Application: This application targets scrap collectors at scrap yards and those who travel to customer locations for scrap collection.
• Gate Application: This is a kiosk type web application that enables the customers to register themselves on a purchase queue at individual yards.
• Back Office Application: This application allows the business to define products, create customers, register purchases, manage inventory, analyse purchase transactions and perform purchase settlements based on the payment due dates.
Allion Technologies ensured that the SMART solution integrated with the existing systems of Vinning for high scalability and re-usability. The SMART solution had the supreme flexibility via its tailormade APIs’ to integrate with several industry-standard third-party applications such as:
• Fortnox: This is an accounting application with fund transfer and scheduled fund transfer facilities.
• Trustly: This is a payment gateway that enables a direct debiting facility.
• Roaring: This is a population registry that contains information about all people and organisations registered in Sweden. By linking with this application, upon registering a customer in the SMART system the user need not type in a standard set of customer-related data. This information can be retrieved from Roaring by sending the identification number of individuals and organisations.
• Power BI: This is a trendy data analytics cum data visualisation tool. In the SMART solution context, this enables the users to visualise the flow of inventory as well as customers individual purchase and selling frequencies. Further, it also enables customers to understand the flow of funds.
Process: Ground-Level Study and Well-Planned Execution
Allion Technologies held multiple rounds of discussions with Vinning for a ground-level study and to understand business requirements and expectations. This comprised a six-step process:
• Business analysis
• Requirement elicitation
• Requirement high-level documentation
• Storyboard designing
• Requirement understanding
• Planning of the high-level delivery milestones along with the broken-down business deliverables.
Based on intense discussions, Vinning and Allion Technologies collaboratively prioritised automating the purchase flow and scrap inventory.
Being an agile organisation, the DevOps practices that Allion Technologies shadow has enabled it to reduce the overheads of the development team. It has also allowed the team to focus solely on development.
Allion Technologies made all three applications go live in less than five months.
Results: Robust IT Systems and Acquisition Spree
Since the implementation of the SMART solution, Vinning has successfully acquired <please fill the number> companies in the same business.
SMART has replaced most manual processes, leading to seamless operations, cost efficiency, and effectiveness.
After the success of implemented solutions, Allion Technologies worked closely with Vinning to define and automate other processes.
The case of Vinning brought insightful learnings on the way for Allion Technologies:
• Had to conduct an elaborate study on the third-party application functionalities, limitations and API specifications.
• Had to find out a generalised pattern to validate bank account numbers and their respective clearing numbers since Vinning was transacting with more than 50 local and international banks in Sweden. This was a complex exercise.
However, the experience Allion Technologies gained on implementing this project has given it valuable exposure to ground-up development. It managed to transform a complete manual and paper-based system into a self-sufficient and highly scalable software system.
Vinning is a leading company in scrap metal collection and recycling in Sweden. It is equipping the traditional industry in metal recycling to gear up for tomorrow’s needs.
About Allion Technologies
Allion Technologies is a trusted partner of choice for technology services. It crafts and envisions the ideal, and most lucrative software product or offering for businesses.