Provalt has been collecting and transforming dead animals in the Jura region of France since 1923.
We’d like to talk about how Provalt’s numbers crushed the competition thanks to Android.
Provalt, a company specializing in sanitary waste disposal, wanted software to help manage its rounds and follow up on collections within the public market in France (SPE: Service Public d’Équarrissage).
In 2013, the machines used at the time started showing signs of slowing down despite four different upgrades. That was when a substantial tool came into play: Android from Google.
Thanks to the gains in productivity, the company was able to acquire a supplementary operation center as well as increase its collection rates by 20% without disturbing its logistics chain. The time had come to jump on the mobility bandwagon as well thanks to a customized Android app created by 2CS.
The legal context also changed regarding the dockets required during collection, which are now non-material.
The app had to take on the main functions of the previous software that operated under Windows:
What’s more, with the various materials integrated within Android terminals, several functions were added to other original features:
2CS built its solution based on an API PHP Apigility from Zend Framework. This JSON-format data distribution platform interfaces the central database while filtering access and verifying data coherence with extreme performances. The server is housed internally at Monnard Équarrissage around a virtual machine VMWare.
On the Android side, the app is native and developed on Android Studio. We can’t see the job details on the screen, we simply report and adapt the Windows app to Android.
The Apigility/Android Studio package that we generally provided several times with “interfaceable” Android apps connected to separate databases proved to be a winner. With a refresh rate of five minutes, the Android app lets drivers receive new requests both faster and more faithfully.
Now in its second version, the API is still in PHP but is based on Symfony, an excellent open source framework in its 4th version.
The app was also completely revamped, going from the original version of SQLite database management to the Room framework. The interface also allowed for the operation of API Retrofit and benefits from Material Design 2.
Thanks to the Android app, Provalt was able to reduce its collection times through better communication support that was now handled directly by the terminal instead of the previous method of using a modem. It was further helped by using Google Maps to locate collection points, letting the driver better visualize distances and geographical difficulties en route between points.
However, Google Maps still doesn’t use a number of parameters to the best of their potential, mainly because it isn’t a tool for optimizing rounds based on GPS points, 90% of which are in rural areas. These parameters include factoring in the effects of the Garabit viaduct on vehicles (authorized weight per vehicle, height, prohibited materials, etc.).
By reducing collection times by a few hours, Provalt increased both its quality and its profits.