TNT Express, which used operations research to modernize operations and strengthen its carbon footprint, won the 2012 Franz Edelman Award for Achievement in Operations Research and the Management Sciences at a banquet sponsored by the Institute for Operations Research and the Management Sciences (INFORMS) in Huntington Beach last night.
The competition took place at the INFORMS 2012 Conference on Business Analytics and Operations Research. INFORMS is the premier organization for advanced analytics professionals.
"Little did we know when the financial crisis hit us hard in 2008 that we'd be standing here tonight at the Edelman Award ceremony," said Chris Goosens, the company's Managing Director Global Networks and Operations.
The Franz Edelman competition, now celebrating its 40th year, attests to the contributions of operations research and analytics in the profit and non-profit sectors. Since its inception in 1972, cumulative dollar benefits from Edelman finalist projects have reached $180 billion.
Every week 4.7 million parcels, documents, and pieces of freight must be transported by TNT Express to over 200 countries while maintaining the company's service standards. Until recently, this was done without mathematical support. In 2005 TNT moved to a fact-based decision-making system, the Global Optimization (GO) Program, which uses mathematical modeling.
As a result, decision-making improved system-wide, with significant operational benefits. Between 2008 and 2011, TNT Express realized more than €207 million in savings and benefits.
The six finalists competing in the 2012 Franz Edelman Award Competition included teams from Carlson Hotels, the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), the Greek shipping company Danaos Corporation, HP, and Intel.
Professor Graham Rand of the Lancaster University Management School in the United Kingdom was master of ceremonies of the gala at which the Edelman winner was announced.
Every year, the Franz Edelman competition recognizes outstanding examples of operations research-based projects that have transformed companies, entire industries, and people's lives. O.R. uses advanced analytical methods to help make better decisions.
Past Franz Edelman winners include MISO, Indeval, Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center, and IBM. Additional information about the Edelman Competition is online at http://www.scienceofbetter.org/Edelman.
The Institute for Operations Research and the Management Sciences (INFORMS®) is an international scientific society with 10,000 members, including Nobel Prize laureates, dedicated to applying scientific methods to help improve decision-making, management, and operations. Members of INFORMS work in business, government, and academia. They are represented in fields as diverse as airlines, health care, law enforcement, the military, financial engineering, and telecommunications. INFORMS serves the scientific and professional needs of operations research analysts, experts in analytics, consultants, scientists, students, educators, and managers, as well as their institutions, by publishing a variety of journals that describe the latest research in operations research. INFORMS Online (IOL) is at www.informs.org. Further information about operations research can be found at www.scienceofbetter.org.
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