Cardinal Healthcare


Learn how Cardinal Health improved efficiencies in the distribution of its pharmaceutical products.

The Challenge

Cardinal Health provides pharmaceutical drugs and medical products to many of America’s most prestigious medical institutions. The Ohio-based company services hospitals, pharmacies, outpatient surgery centers, clinical laboratories and physicians’ offices. It also operates the largest network of radiopharmacies in the US, which provide diagnostic services and radioactive medicines for cancer patients.

Sourcing products from its 20 facilities across the US, Cardinal Healthcare makes around 25,000 deliveries per day in accordance with each customer’s requirement. The company uses third-party courier partners to make the deliveries, and those couriers also transport products for Cardinal Health’s competitors.

Due to the time-bound and often urgent nature of healthcare provision, Cardinal Health must ensure that the requested medical products are delivered to the right place at the right time; all consignments are delivered by midday. To operate within the courier companies’ routes and schedules, Cardinal Health has a huge logistical task to fulfill every day.

The Solution

Cardinal Health uses TMW Systems’ FinalMile software for route planning and checking its couriers’ truck availability. The company is able to assess multiple scenarios, based on the required drop-off locations and time-scales by which deliveries have to be made. FinalMile’s DirectRoute function allows Cardinal Health to plan which deliveries can be made on each courier’s available trucks; while the DRTrack function enables real-time tracking of trucks on the day, to make alterations to routes or timings, as needed, and consequently to discuss with customers any changes to the delivery schedule.

The Result

In using TMW Systems’ FinalMile, Cardinal Health has been able to share information with couriers and make efficiencies in planning. For example, if a courier has suggested that a particular region’s deliveries would require 30 trucks, Cardinal Health can show that the drop-offs could be made using only 28 trucks, thereby saving costs.  

“The FinalMile software is incredibly easy to use, in allowing us to input every drop-off stop and every time-scale window, seeing the data reports it produces and then sharing that information with our courier partners,” said Chris Sirios, transportation manager at Cardinal Health. “The accuracy by which we can identify the best routes and delivery schedules means we can efficiently plan what we need to do to provide the best service for our customers.

“And if we gain a new customer, we can put their requirements into the system and immediately see what impact that would have. FinalMile has allowed us to grow in helping our partners efficiently manage their routes, and enable both them and us to gain new customers."

“TMW Systems has shown itself to be a valuable partner and the company has been a great help to us whenever we’ve needed extra support.”

- Chris Sirios, transportation manager