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Smarter waste collection thanks to OS Places

Save thousands of pounds by accurately identifying delivery and pick up address points

The challenge

A firm running a national waste collection service to thousands of UK homes and many of the UK’s leading businesses has a large network of depots around the country.

Using a huge fleet of vehicles, it collects domestic waste material to provide a convenient, hassle-free waste disposal solution.

When insufficient address data is supplied to the company, valuable time and resources can be wasted finding the exact address.

For example, the address: Rose Cottage, Acacia Avenue and a postcode sounds like sufficient information, but when Acacia Avenue is three miles long and a postcode has 50 houses, dispatching a driver to this address could be time consuming, labour-intensive and wasteful of fuel, as simply finding Rose Cottage is difficult.

The company has estimated it loses a six-figure sum per year in missed pick-ups due to insufficient data supplied to them by their customers.

The solution

OS Places provides the best, most accurate address data available.

Ordnance Survey’s new address look up web service enables you to query the most comprehensive address database in Great Britain; AddressBase® Premium.

When the call handler for the waste collection company puts the given address into OS Places, the information is retuned with a valid, up to date address, as well as precise geographic X Y coordinates.

The benefits

  • Works as an online link between operatives and the information they need – in this case a precise location.
  • With data stored in the Cloud, it frees organisations from updating and managing address data themselves.
  • Operatives can pinpoint, find and prepare for trips to precise locations, shrinking the risk of sending people to the wrong address.
  • Accessed through the OS Places web service, address data integrates easily into customer-facing or back-office systems.

Using the best, most up to date and comprehensive database anywhere in this country, OS Places can potentially recoup 50 per cent of the reported losses annually in missed pickups for this company alone.

That’s a six-figure saving per year.

More savings predicted in the future

OS is investigating ways to tackle the remaining deficit, which is due to the customer giving inaccurate information about the type of waste to be collected.

This has led to the wrong type of vehicle being dispatched leading to further waste of time, fuel, resources and money.

However, Ordnance Survey is currently developing new technology to work alongside OS Places using GPS information and pickup photography from a smartphone.

It’s hoped this will allow companies to schedule a team accurately, take pressure off back-office staff and make further savings for their business.

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© Ordnance Survey 2019