8 reasons for delivery route optimisation | Descartes Routing UK

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8 reasons for delivery route optimisation

Delivery Planning

8 Tell Tale Signs that that you may need a delivery route optimisation solution


1)    It takes you all afternoon or longer to plan the next day’s deliveries.

a.    A dynamic delivery route optimisation solution will calculate deliveries for the next day and beyond automatically as each order is taken and keep optimising the delivery routes right up until you say stop and the vehicles are loaded. An optimised delivery route schedule only takes a few minutes to achieve.

2)    You frequently have vehicles returning early and empty while other vehicles are out late and still delivering.

a.    Loads between vehicles are automatically shared in order to utilise each vehicle to its full capacity, but this also means that each delivery route is equal, not necessarily in the number of deliveries but in the overall workload. This creates a feeling of fairness amongst drivers that planners are not favouring certain drivers with shorter routes or less deliveries.

3)    Your Drivers complain of visiting similar locations in the afternoon as in the morning.

a.    Where deliveries can be grouped together and delivered at similar times a delivery route optimisation and scheduling tool will do this, but a dynamic optimisation tool will also consider orders across a number of days, bringing forward deliveries if it makes sense to do so and the customer has not set a delivery date. This can result in higher levels of customer satisfaction for those that receive deliveries earlier than expected.

4)    You regularly need to hire in extra vehicles and drivers to meet your delivery demands or you are turning customers away because you don’t have the delivery capacity.

a.    Having a delivery route optimisation solution that considers your deliveries dynamically against the vehicles in your fleet over several days and does not just schedule orders for the next day in batches, means that you will only allow deliveries scheduled if there is capacity in your fleet available. This also reduces the number of disappointed customers whose delivery date must be later changed when you realise you don’t have capacity and must move their delivery to another day, as they are only presented with or provided a delivery date that the system knows can be met.

5)    If you can’t easily provide your customers with an ETA and then meet that scheduled delivery window.

a.    Using an Artificial Intelligence (AI) software for delivery route optimisation that utilises the latest traffic data and maps means that your delivery ETA’s will be accurate and achievable within a half hour to 1 hour window. Resulting in satisfied customers when their deliveries turn up on the expected time.

6)    Goods are frequently returned due to the customer not being present to receive the goods.

a.    If accurate delivery windows can’t be provided and customers are told that their goods will be delivered in the next few days will often result in them not being present for the delivery. However, if an accurate ETA is provided customers will either know to wait in or request another more suitable time for a delivery, hence a higher percentage of deliveries that are then successful.

b.    Offering customers the ability to select their own delivery slots can also result in a more efficient operation. Not all customers want their goods delivered the next day and by incentivising (with reduced delivery costs) a day/time when another delivery is in their area customers will often choose the lower cost option and enable savings to be made with two deliveries close together. A dynamic delivery routing solution will consider orders already taken, and in the system, when optimising routes and offering potential delivery windows for new orders.

7)    If you believe your delivery costs are rising faster than inflation.

a.    If your delivery routes are not optimised then your vehicles could be travelling further than necessary, costing you more in fuel and maintenance. Optimised delivery schedules will result in reduced costs overall, a lower cost per delivery resulting in less wear and tear on vehicles and lower maintenance costs. With the drive to net zero it will also reduce CO2 emissions by eliminating wasted miles.

8)    You keep receiving calls from customers asking where their delivery is and why it is late.

a.    Combining a dynamic delivery route optimisation solution with customer delivery notifications will improve customer knowledge of their deliveries and reduce your workload. If a customer knows their delivery has left the yard and can track a vehicle’s location as it approaches their delivery point, they are less likely to be contacting you and checking on their delivery and a great chance of being present for the delivery.

b.    Simply being able to offer a narrow delivery time and having the knowledge that it is achievable means that with time your customers will also become accustomed to receiving their deliveries from you when you say they will receive them, resulting in a higher confidence rate in your deliveries and an improved level of customer satisfaction. 

Contact us to discover how a Dynamic Delivery route optimisation Solution can help your organisation.

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