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How Yamato HK Deployed a Robust Forecast Engine and Reduced Workflow Processing Time from Weeks to a Day with AntStack!
Yamato Logistics (HK) Ltd. is a member of the Yamato group, Japan’s largest delivery company known for its international freight forwarding services, door-to-door delivery services, logistics services, and local/international moving services.
With a global footprint, they offer optimum supply chain solutions and innovative logistics services.
Business decisions in the logistics industry today are based on a data intelligence platform that translates demand forecasts into precise transportation capacity requirements.
Yamato Logistics (HK) Ltd. was also seeking to establish a robust forecast engine to create advanced forecasts and plan downstream resource needs.
One of the most significant obstacles they faced in the journey was the presence of human dependencies in its Excel processing, which led to errors, delays, and inefficiencies. Moreover, they encountered incompatibility issues with AWS Glue Crawler while processing some of their Excel files, which caused additional time and resources to overcome.
Another major roadblock was data discrepancies since data coming from various sources needed to be brought to an AWS environment. This issue created complications in data processing, integration, validation, and synchronization, potentially leading to erroneous predictions and sub-optimal decision-making.
That’s when AntStack came in.
Yamato HK aimed to standardize the data generated by their diverse range of customers and leverage it to estimate future sales and capacity planning. They had already set up a couple of resources on AWS, but they needed help to develop on top of what was already done, speed up the development process, and automate various manual processes.
- Standardize data generated by various Yamato customers.
- Use standardized data to estimate future sales and capacity planning.
- Optimize workflows to improve the speed of the entire process.
- Automate various processes such as extracting information from Excel files, converting Excel to CSVs, triggering pipelines as soon as data arrives, etc.
- Optimize workflow costs.
AntStack transformed Excel files to CSVs using custom lambda functions and set up a sync between SharePoint and AWS S3 to address the issue of data discrepancies.
Additionally, they used Athena queries to remove outliers and structure the data outputted by the legacy tools. These solutions helped streamline the entire ETL process and removed the need for manual inputs, making it faster, more reliable, and cost-effective.
Faster Decision Making
The standardization of data across various sources and the use of AWS Quicksight for generating reports resulted in more reliable and accurate decision-making capabilities for Yamato’s administration.
The reports generated by AWS Quicksight allowed for real-time monitoring of KPIs and other metrics, enabling Yamato to make faster, data-driven decisions.
Faster Processing Time
One of the major benefits that Yamato gained from implementing AntStack’s solution was the ability to provide dashboards to business users in a significantly shorter timeframe.
AntStack’s new forecast solution enabled faster delivery of insights, with dashboards becoming available to business users within days instead of weeks. This accelerated timeline enhanced Yamato’s agility and competitiveness in the market, allowing them to make more informed decisions faster and stay ahead of their competitors.
Cost Effective Scaling
AntStack’s solution for Yamato enabled significant cost savings by optimizing the workflows and automating various manual processes.
The use of AWS serverless services allowed for a highly scalable and efficient infrastructure, enabling Yamato to only pay for the resources they needed. Additionally, by standardizing the data and automating the ETL process Yamato mitigated the risks of errors and data inconsistencies, resulting in a remarkable 80% reduction in costs.
A startup within the organisation
AntStack continues to help the Yamato team as Partners by offering them excellent support and knowledge transfer.
“We wanted to partner with AntStack to leverage their expertise, grow our team and focus on AWS. Developers in HK are rare and very expensive. Working in collaboration with the AntStack team, our team gained a lot of experience in backend Lambda, step function, API gateway deployments, group template using SAM CLI and confirmation, technology related to security, and much more”, said Samson.
Now Yamato’s in-house development team utilizes Elasticsearch with AWS to store, search, and analyze massive volumes of data quickly and in real-time for the Parcel Management System (PMS).
Results that speak volumes
The forecast engine solution implemented by AntStack for Yamato is now fully operational and has become a critical tool for Yamato’s decision- making process, providing accurate insights for the business.
- Automated and streamlined the ETL process, reducing manual effort and improving efficiency.
- Achieved 80% cost savings through standardization and automation, using AWS Serverless frameworks.
- Reduced processing time from weeks to a day, enhancing performance and speed of the entire ETL process.
- Enabled Yamato to better understand and respond to customer preferences through a more comprehensive data analysis.
In their words
Samson Yu Chun Pong
Head of IT, Yamato