Penske Logistics announced this week that it is extending its use of JDA Software to manage its warehouse management on a global basis. JDA Software, which merged with supply chain rival RedPrairie in December last year, is a leading provider of supply chain management software, and amidst its 2,800+ customer base counts several Fortune 500 automotive OEM and tier suppliers. It also includes a number of LSPs serving the automotive industry. Penske is one and already uses JDA’s Transportation Management software. It will now add Warehouse Management and Warehouse Labor Management solutions.

David Johnston, senior vice president, Supply Chain at JDA, said that using both would allow Penske Logistics to work on advanced upstream transport plans, with insight into constraints such as dock profiles and warehouse capacity.

Penske has operations in North and South America, Europe and Asia, and the latest uptake of JDA’s software comes the company seeks a uniform system for its warehouse facilities across the world, which is equal to more than 1.7m square metres.

According to Piet Zoutendijk, managing director of Europe for Penske Logistics (pictured), who spoke to Automotive Logistics at JDA’s Focus Connect conference in London UK this week, while its existing systems work excellently, including those developed internally, Penske Logistics’ growth over the last 10-15 years has resulted in a variety of different systems in different areas of the world.

“Going forward, we would ideally like to see one system that we can apply globally, which provides us with the functionality that we need with the distribution centre management [DCM] business,” said Zoutendijk.

While providing one system, Penske will be working with JDA Software on adapting it to the specific requirements of each regional market, including those distinguishing Europe from North America.

“You will find in Europe more multi-user environments, while the US has larger facilities with one single customer,” said Zoutendijk. “Ideally we will be the one that helps to develop the multi-user environment, because that is critical for Europe.”

Using a standardised solution promises greater efficiencies in the shared user facility but demands that processes are aligned. “If you have a particular solution for each customer and it doesn’t fit the other, that is a negative,” said Zoutendijk. “So we have to work on more standardised processes with this new piece of software.”

In terms of roll out, the companies are looking at Europe and pre-selected North American sites to start with. Zoutendijk said they were in the preparation phase, with Penske having signed up for the licences and ready to start implementing them in early 2014.