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May 1, 2002
Pittsburgh Logistics Moves Steel, Saves Money

In November 2001, Wheeling-Pittsburgh Steel outsourced its traffic function to Pittsburgh Logistics with the expectation that it would save money while improving service. Pittsburgh logistics is responsible for contracting and scheduling carriers and tracking delivery for Wheeling-Pittsburgh Steel's customer deliveries.

Six months later the results are in.

"They are doing an outstanding job," said Mae Barnes, Director of Customer Service. "Their philosophy is to ship every coil every day and they are pulling out all the stops to do that." The savings are there too, with more than $120,000 in reduced transportation costs through March.

Pittsburgh Logistics has 22 steel and other metals businesses for which it handles the traffic function. It typically schedules 3,000 to 4,000 loads per day for all its customers and uses its high volume muscle to negotiate lower rates and ensure truck availability. Before taking on our traffic function, Pittsburgh Logistics also did an in-depth study of our needs and then committed the assets necessary to be successful.

"Our success, depends on more than just negotiating better rates and having more trucks available," said Jim Plunkett, logistics engineer, of Pittsburgh Logistics. "Wheeling-Pittsburgh's management's involvement has been important to achieving our goals. They worked closely with us so we could understand Wheeling-Pittsburgh's operations and how their processes and paperwork flowed. The better we understand their operations and what drives them, the more responsive we can be to their needs."

"Pittsburgh Logistics partnership with Wheeling-Pittsburgh has been the most successful and beneficial to both parties and we hope to make additional improvements over time," Plunkett noted.

This article appeared in Steel Page, an internal publication for the employees of Wheeling Pittsburgh Steel.

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