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Logistics Solutions for Building Suppliers & Merchants

The construction and house building sector is a fast-paced, dynamic market with products and deliveries often needed the next day or at a specific date and time.

The COVID-19 epidemic and other major economic challenges such as driver shortages and rising fuel costs have had an impact on the construction sector, along with many other sectors. To move projects along without adding new concerns or delays, building supplies and construction companies need to adapt with new solutions to provide cost-effective, on time and in full (OTIF) deliveries.

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Here are four logistics issues in the building industry that you can resolve.

Overcome building supply logistics challenges



By reducing miles driven and increasing delivery density for building supplies and materials with advanced route optimisation and delivery scheduling software costs and CO2 emissions can be significantly reduced. A win-win situation that can be a real competitive advantage rather than a challenge.

BS Reducing damage in transit

Reducing damage in transit

Large building supplies can be prone to damage in transit. All too frequently, improper handling, poor delivery procedures, and improper loading and unloading can cause serious damage leading to long (and expensive) delays. Optimised loading and route optimisation can ensure that your goods are more likely to be delivered on time and in full.

Driver shortages

Driver shortages

It is a challenge to meet increased demand and delivery expectations with the well-publicised driver shortage, You can overcome this challenge using routing and scheduling software to optimise your fleet deliveries. Existing Descartes customers have increased delivery capacity by 25% without adding vehicles or drivers.



Before the building supplies have even arrived, there may be a mess on-site if the construction team is unaware of the forthcoming deliveries. Therefore, knowing the delivery window for building supplies is critical. You can give your company insight into the delivery process for building supplies by choosing the right end-to-end visibility solutions.

Route Planning and Optimisation

An introduction to the Descartes Scheduling and Routing optimisation tools that can create and execute plans, increasing efficiency, providing greater visibility and streamlining communications.

Descartes Construction & Building Supplies Solutions

With your current vehicles and drivers, we can help you cut down on mileage, fuel costs, and delivery times while enabling you to provide more precise and reliable delivery windows and the ability to create visibility for drivers, vehicle performance or location.

Descartes customers already include:

  • Builders Merchants
  • Product manufacturers
  • Sand and Gravel distribution
  • Electrical and HVAC supply
  • Timber merchants


Not sure where to start? Contact one of our experts.


Logistics solutions for Building Product manufacturers, Merchants and DIY stores

Key Descartes solutions for an optimal logistics operation.

  • Vehicle loading

    If the Descartes mobile apps are utilised with a handheld mobile device then goods are scanned as they are loaded onto the vehicle, thus ensuring that the right goods and quantities are loaded and that nothing is left behind.

    The use of mobile devices saves the printing of load documents and tickets, not only avoiding mistakes but also the cost and time of printing these.

  • Site deliveries

    Various site parameters such as access and machinery for offloading can be taken into account by the system ensuring that the correct vehicles and manpower is utilised for deliveries, while also safeguarding that the vehicles are not over promised, or customers let down. Tight delivery windows can be promised in the safe knowledge that they will be achievable.

    Read more about Planning and Scheduling Delivery Routes

  • Proof of delivery

    Goods being delivered are scanned as they are taken off the vehicle ensuring that the right goods are supplied and that nothing is forgotten.

    Building sites are often chaotic locations with many people signing for and accepting deliveries regularly on behalf of other trades; keeping track of goods delivered, who signed for them and the condition of them when delivered is an important aspect of deliveries for any building products company. The Descartes Proof of Delivery app can be used on most mobile devices and allows not only for signatures, but the photographs of recipients and locations plus the recording of any damage or shortage identified by the customer.

    Acceptance of, or issues with, goods delivered and signatures can be instantly sent back to the office for invoices and queries to be dealt with.

    Read more about Proof of Delivery

  • Cloud based Software as a Service

    Descartes Automated Route and scheduling optimisation is a SaaS cloud-based solution, enabling the operation of the software from any location with an internet connection. This is useful for route planners who for various reasons might be required to work is different office locations or from home.


Building Supply Case Studies

Optimise Your Construction and Building Supply Logistics


  • Sustainability
  • Reducing damage in transit
  • Driver shortages
  • Visibility


  • Reducing CO2
  • Optimising Your Fleet
  • Increase Delivery Capacity
  • End-to-end Visibility Software