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The answers to the questions regarding YMS:

         What is the size of the market (in term of dollar value)?

The standalone Yard Management Systems (YMS) market is approximately $ 35.000,000 US which includes C3, Pinc, Navis and Yardview software solutions. The other software companies that sell YMS below, sell it in conjunction with a Warehouse Management System (WMS) and Transportation Management System (TMS) so there is no way to gauge those YMS sales as they could be with, or without, the YMS system depending on the customer’s needs. About 50% of companies still use clipboards, spreadsheets and walkie-talkies to manage their yards.

What the key trends in the market, in terms of technology development, platforms used, buying patterns, supplier acquisitions, etc.? Cloud (the Internet) is what most every YMS user wants. C3 is introducing a “light” YMS system for those small companies that have only one (1) or (2) jockey drivers in their yard. Key Trend: YMS and Real Time Location System (RTLS):

 RTLS (Real Time Location System): Key qualitative descriptors that need to be quantified

– Real-Time – per second vs per day

– Location – by inch, by foot, by acre?

  • Quantification is application dependent
  • For effective yard visibility:

– RTLS means “track trailers with a few second delay and within a few feet, or +/-1 parking spot of accuracy.” Real-time location systems (RTLS) technology determines an object’s current position based on real-time information gathered through a wireless system. RFID: radio frequency Identification works well here.

 Global Positioning System (GPS): Mapping Technology.

Combining GPS and RFID leverages existing yard processes. While yard tractors carry out their regular duties, attached GPS-enabled RFID readers recognize trailers by the tags, and report the location data in real time.

RTLS also enables management to monitor yard operations’ key performance indicators (KPIs) based on quantifiable productivity metrics measured by the actions of the yard trucks. Managers cannot reliably and accurately collect information such as average time per move and percentage of idle time by manual tracking or other means.

The benefit of having real-time electronic data for asset-location yard activities extends beyond improving supply chain visibility at a particular locale.

Not only do corporations gain actionable data to facilitate process redesign and increase operational efficiency, they now also have information to drive best practices across all organizations and sites.

Finally, being able to share real-time visibility data within the enterprise as well as with supply chain partners is crucial for enabling collaboration and transforming to a more responsive and agile global supply chain.

By minimizing the dependency on infrastructure investment, the new breed of RTLS-enabled yard management solutions combines the cost and availability advantages of passive RFID and GPS technologies

Acquisitions: Solera Holdings, Inc. (NYSE: SLH), the leading global provider of software and services to the automobile insurance claims processing industry, today announced that, through a series of transactions, it has acquired  Actual Systems, a global provider of premier parts recycling yard management systems that are sold under the “Pinnacle” brand name (“Actual Systems”).  The Pinnacle software applications are used by sophisticated parts recycling yard operators to manage their daily operations and seamlessly trade recycled parts.  Actual Systems has successfully expanded beyond North America and penetrated Australia, the United Kingdom, the Netherlands, Ireland and Spain

         Who are the top vendors (called “Best of breed”) on the market?

YMS vendors:

High Jump


Red Prairie

C3 Solutions



Pinc Solutions


Wherenet Systems

Zebra Software

Oracle Software

Container Trac

Ultraship Software


Paradox.sci Cosmos

WCS (World Wide Chain Stores)

4 Front Matic

         Why do you think they are the top vendors in the market? What is the rationale behind this?

For standalone systems, “the best of breed” is: C3 and Pinc software. They are tailor made for YMS.

High Jump, JDA and Manhattan have the “best of breed” software for use/integration with Warehouse Management Systems (WMS) and Transportation Management Systems (TMS) They have the largest user forums (people who tell each other about their experiences with this software.)They can do more than the other software Systems. They are not made to be stand alone systems.

Oracle is a YMS Software System that can be customized to meet special needs, but you need excellent IT personnel on hand to do the software customizing/coding.

         Where does majority of the demand for YMS come from, which vertical?

The vertical for YMS is Warehouse and Transportation markets. Much demand comes from Retail distribution needs YMS: Grocery (food) distribution is the highest volume commodity that people consume. Healthcare needs are a good fit for YMS. Postal and parcel distributors use YMS. Import ocean going containers use YMS for receiving and handling capabilities. YMS is needed in container staging yards (Container Trac Software, for instance) to prioritize containers for unloading. Manufacturing trucking assets that move between buildings are monitored using YMS. In Just in Time (JIT) manufacturing, YMS avoids truck and container delays that could result in costly production shutdowns. Logistics Providers, like Third Party Logistics (3PL) companies, use YMS, after a truck leaves the Warehouse. YMS eliminates the “Blind Spot” once the truck leaves, or comes back into the yard, outside of the warehouse. It helps eliminate “Dead Heads” or trucks leaving or coming back without freight aboard the truck, which is very costly to a company. Companies use YMS as follows:

You can manage dock door scheduling, truck location, appointment scheduling, obtain real time truck visibility and optimize driver labor resources. Used with RFID: Radio Frequency Identification Program to track the trucks, To improve their gate throughput, YMS increases yard worker productivity, YMS reduces detention (trucks sitting in charge zones) costs and it assists yard jockeying efficiency (moving trucks around the yard).


         Do they prefer a holistic suite with YMS as an integrated tool or do they prefer standalone YMS solutions? What is the reason for choosing a particular type of solution?

Preference? WMS, Transportation Management Systems (TMS) and YMS work the best together and are preferred as a holistic suite. The reason? You can control the warehouse movement of material with WMS and the transportation movement with YMS. TMS manage the routes and lanes and economy of the transportation, but TMS does not handle the yard visibility management like YMS. The overall system of a company is called Enterprise Resource Planning (ERP). WMS, YMS and TMS can be a part of ERP.

By having the YMS application notify your ERP system that the trailer has checked into the yard, the allocation plan could be recalculated based upon the latest inventory position in the stores and sent to the warehouse system for processing later in your information flow model, thus contributing to a better deployment of inventory.

YMS, as an independent standalone software, is for markets who only concern themselves with yard management visibility. Only some companies prefer YMS as a standalone system.


         What are the different types of deployment models? What is the most preferred deployment model in the industry currently and why?

Cloud is the most used and preferred deployment model in the industry. It is less costly to purchase, and you do not need hardware, software and IT personnel in your company.   Cloud services can be deployed in different ways, depending on the organizational structure and the provisioning location. Four deployment models are usually distinguished, namely public, private, community and hybrid cloud service usage.

In house YMS systems mean large hardware and software expenses, fees, maintenance and IT personnel. The other deployment method is to have WMS tied into TMS and YMS. This can be in a Cloud version as well as having hardware and software with IT personnel in house, which is very costly. A large ERP system can integrate all systems in Cloud or in house versions.

         Is YMS the only solution capable of performing the required tasks or is there any other alternative Open source software which can replace YMS in the long run?

No, you can do Yard Management Systems manually, but you must have IT or systems knowledge. You can custom write reports daily in Microsoft Access. You can write code (takes expertise) when you need it. You can obtain email reports giving you yard status to carriers, empties, out of service, aging, bit inspection, yard audits and many more. A data import can be done from the host/WM. If you have the IT ability, you can use Microsoft Access to do everything else. You then have to write queries from your data base. You use queries to answer common questions: i.e., How many loaded trailers are ready, where are the empty locations, when were yard moves put in the queue, etc. This does take training and education. The reason for software is that it makes manual work easier, so I believe the Cloud version of YMS is better and more economical (less labor intensive) than creating a manual YMS system using Microsoft Access.

Another alternative to integrate into a YMS System:

Intermec has many software-based Imaging Solutions that enable automated data collection when only letters and numbers are present. These imaging solutions take advantage of the enhanced scan engine, camera and optical character recognition (OCR) capabilities present in many Intermec mobile computers. Imaging Solutions are designed to promote the paperless workflow process and improve yard operations. Scanning trailer numbers for input into a yard management system is one of the imaging solutions offered by Intermec. The ultra-rugged Intermec CK71 mobile computer, with the extended range EX25 scan engine, can perform long distance scans and withstand harsh outdoor conditions. The underlying OCR engine was developed in a common language for ease of integration with other applications. This data can be used for yard management.

Catalyst WMS Software as an alternate to YMS:


Catalyst is designed to address unique business processes and can operate with standalone modules that can readily integrate into an enterprise’s existing applications.


In addition to providing seamless integration, Catalyst solutions help you to be scalable by providing an event-driven, rules-based workflow platform that will serve as an integration backbone for future applications. Catalyst customers are able to increase utilization of warehouse space, increased throughput, improved perfect order fulfillment and increased inventory turns.


The warehouse management system services key areas, including:

  • Warehouse Management
  • Transportation Management
  • Dynamic Route Planning
  • Slotting
  • Labor Management
  • Cross Dock Planning
  • Yard Management

But, you need IT, and code writing experience to use Catalyst.


Engine Yard is a platform that uses open source technologies and ideologies to automate quick and effective deployment, configuration, and management of mobile and web applications. You need IT and code writing experience in Engine Yard as well.

ere again, you need IT and code writing experience.

These alternate systems cannot replace or manage yard visibility as effectively as YMS.

I will add: YMS Benefits:

It is reported by large companies that YMS yields the following improvements:

30% productivity improvement

YMS is 30% more efficient than with no YMS system in place

Four (4) hours to do yard checks without YMS to 1 ½ hour yard checks with YMS (Labor Savings)

You can easily identify delays using YMS software, and find the root cause problems and solve them immediately with the yard visibility you have with YMS software.

You limit detention demurrage fees with YMS

There are no non-use fees with YMS as you are continuously moving trucks in priority

Food/grocery spoilage expiration is limited with YMS visibility and prioritization.

You can manage MULTILE yards with ease using YMS

Reduce backorders and stock-outs

Fill customer orders accurately, on time, knowing truck visibility and the ability to prioritize shipments.

Maximizing yard space utilization

Improved deployment of inventory

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