For Atlas® Van Lines Canada, the transition to AtlasNet® technology is years in the making. By the end of Q1 2020, their entire private client business will be operating on AtlasNet. It’s been their top priority for the last six months—a significant undertaking that has taken leadership, fortitude, and expert change management at all levels.
“The transition to AtlasNet is a massive undertaking,” says Barry Schellenberg, former President of Atlas Van Lines Canada and current President & COO of Atlas® Van Lines. “It requires changes in technology, processes, and communication for over 3,500 people. It impacts every aspect of the business.”
It’s an adjustment that required extensive forethought and planning. Since Canadian clients do business a little differently, Atlas Van Lines Canada needed to adapt the AtlasNet system to their needs—from accommodating different service offerings to creating custom reporting.
“Our job is simple—we move furniture from one location to another. But everything in between is very complicated,” says Barry. “In Canada, we have 150 companies trying to operate as one brand. It was imperative for us to harness the latest technology to reduce the friction costs between corporate, Atlas Agents, and customers. The more seamless we can make the behind-the-scenes process, the more profitable we can be.”
In the highly competitive moving industry, technology can be a true differentiator. Eliminating duplicative processes, minimizing rework, and pulling volume together is vital to improving profit margins without raising costs to the consumer.
“Our operations platform and communication will drastically improve,” says Barry. “What used to be manual, paper processes will now be handled in a single online system, which helps minimize errors and increase transparency. We will be able to proactively make shipments more efficient and also identify areas for improvement, resulting in increasingly smooth and on-time moves for customers. It will also make recruiting and retaining new talent easier because our systems are intuitive and up-to-date.”
Atlas Van Lines Canada will take the next step in their transition to AtlasNet this fall as they move their corporate clients onto the platform, followed by government clients. It’s a graduated transition process that they believe will make it easier to properly implement, test, and train people as Atlas Canada adapts to the new technology. Atlas Canada expects to be completely migrated to AtlasNet by the end of Q1 2021.
A big thank you also goes out to the team who spearheaded this transition: Shirley Sveda, Senior Vice President; Mark Cooper, Senior Director of Operations; J.J. Mohr, Sr. Director of Information Technology; and Ryan Parmenter, Director of IT Development.