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New Version of CLASS Enables Simulation Using Real Warehouse Activity Data

March 5, 2010

The 12th generation and new version of CLASS the only ‘hands on’ software product exclusively focused on enabling evidence-based design and decision-making in the warehouse, has just been released.

The 12th generation of CLASS, the only ‘hands on’ software product exclusively focused on enabling evidence-based design and decision-making in the warehouse, has just been released. The latest version has a number of new features, key amongst which is the ability to import real warehouse activity direct from users’ warehouse management systems. This powerful facility means that even faster and more accurate model building than before is now possible and that a range of valuable simulation possibilities based on accurate, current data are now available. In addition, a new 3D engine has been incorporated into CLASS, taking advantage of the increased graphics quality available on newer PCs to further improve 3D visualisation within the system.

Three key areas of warehouse operations can now be imported from WMS into CLASS: SKU sales, picking journeys and vehicle inbound and outbound schedules. A new feature allows users to specify an automatic aisle labelling convention which facilitates some of the import functions. Once this has been completed, detailed SKU sales data, such as a list of locations and the sales of SKUs in each location, can be transferred into CLASS. The tool then generates activity profiles for each aisle, reflecting faster and slower moving stock based on the real use of each location. Users are also able to import specific pick journeys going to particular locations that have been recorded by the WMS. These can then be simulated within CLASS to assess daily activity or longer term productivity and to test actual performance against KPIs. In addition, managers can now export files of inbound and outbound vehicle activity from a WMS, which CLASS uses to create arrival and departure time profiles based on actual historic individual vehicle loads.

Other new simulation features of CLASS 12 include a Load Visualiser enabling changes to the virtual image of the 3D load to be more quickly reflected, a Dock Selections List giving users the ability to more accurately reflect the real-life use of docks and an exciting new Project Comparison report that means users can compare ‘What if?’ results from several projects at a time.

The company responsible for the creation and on-going development of CLASS is Cirrus Logistics, a world leader in the development and application of advanced modelling and simulation technology focused on improving performance in distribution. Commenting on the release of CLASS 12, Carol Chapman of Cirrus Logistics says: “We are always listening to our customers, seeking to add new features to CLASS as their specific needs dictate, and we are constant users of the tool ourselves, so we are never short of ideas for enhancements to meet new warehouse design and operational challenges. The increasing power of technology is helping us turn our wish list into a deliverable number of new features every year whilst maintaining the fundamental values of CLASS as a tool that is very easy-to-use for logistics professionals despite its underlying complexity.”

Some of the current and recent users of CLASS are: DHL-Exel, PZ Cussons, Belron, ASDA, Roberts Bakery, Qatar Gas Transport Company and Schenker.