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Dynamically Create the Best Delivery Route Schedules

Delivery Route Scheduling

The idea behind delivery route scheduling is to choose the best order for a delivery vehicle to complete its deliveries as well as which delivery vehicle an order should be conveyed on. While route optimisation uses advanced map data on average road speeds, commercial risks, and restrictions to calculate and optimise the route in order to ensure that the vehicles travel the most efficient route and save the company time and money.

To develop the optimum delivery route plans quickly, artificial intelligence and machine learning software use sophisticated mathematical algorithms.

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Descartes' software will continuously analyse orders as they come in and compare them to the delivery resources and capacity available, as opposed to merely taking a batch of orders that are hoped to be delivered the following day.  

This ensures that resources like cars and drivers are fully utilised, taking precise routes, and not being over-committed outside of their normal working hours. As a result, we are able to confidently guarantee to clients their delivery eta using automated notifications, knowing that vehicles and delivery routes are as ideal as feasible with the highest possible delivery density.

Delivery Scheduling Overview

A brief overview of the Delivery Scheduling module

Features & Benefits

Customers select reservations

Provide an enhanced delivery experience with costed delivery options at the point of sale. Increase sales of goods and value added services.

Dynamic slot scheduling

Increased customer satisfaction and increased sales through self-selecting delivery times and days.

Continuous background optimisation

Achieve more efficient route plans than traditional batch-based optimisation techniques and provide costed delivery options at the point of sale in seconds.

Cloud based software

Our Software is available over the internet wherever you have a connection, providing access to our solution when you are working from any location in the world.

Customer Sucesses

Delivery Route Scheduling FAQs

  • What are the most important elements of creating a delivery route schedule?

    All orders need to start with quality data for the order itself;

    • The delivery address
    • Operating hours, or hours in which a delivery can take place
    • Any unloading restrictions
    • Product data
      • Dimensions
      • Weight
      • Stacking rules
      • Materials carried in case they are hazardous or need special handling


    After the details of the product and customer, comes the data about the vehicles available,
    such as;

    • Size and capacity of the vehicle
    • CO2 Emissions, (so entry into Clean Air Zones can be considered)


    Without such details delivery schedules will be inaccurate and could result in missed deliveries or over utilised vehicles, all of which might impact customer service levels and the efficiency of the operation.

    Next is the Route Optimistion software that will accurately model the real-world conditions and thus the most efficient routes with achievable deliveries.

    Read More About Route Optimisation

  • What are the benefits of scheduling delivery routes?

    The benefits of scheduling your delivery routes are;

    • Increased delivery density and improved utilisation of delivery vehicles and drivers,
      • Resulting in lower cost per delivery and fewer miles per delivery


    • Reliability of delivery routes that are achievable in the time,
      • Customers’ goods are delivered in narrow time slots and on time
      • Improved performance and customer satisfaction


    • No over utilisation or over capacity of vehicles,
      • Goods don’t have to be left behind resulting in disappointed customers
      • Under utilised delivery vehicles add costs


    • Advanced warnings of high delivery volumes so additional vehicles/staff can be planned for in advance.


    • Reducing the miles per delivery also reduces the CO2 per delivery and thus is better for the environment too.


    Descartes’ delivery route scheduling software works in conjunction with the route optimisation engine and recalculates not just the schedule but also the delivery routes, every time an order is taken.

    The clever Artificial Intelligence (AI) Delivery Scheduling and Routing Software can also schedule deliveries over several days, helping to ensure optimal delivery schedules and routes are created. This is proven to be a better methodology than optimising a batch of orders just for the next day.

    Being able to offer a narrow delivery window with a high degree of certainty that the delivery time can be met at the time an order is taken will give your company a competitive advantage. Not all customers want their delivery the next day and will often prefer them to be delivered on a day and time that suits them. Being able to offer the customer the ability to select their own delivery window from a selection the system has put forward, based on the current orders in the system will increase customer satisfaction. It can also help to ensure that all deliveries are costed and viable for your business.

    Contact Us to Discuss the Benefits for Your Business

  • What cost savings can be expected with delivery route scheduling and optimisation?

    Savings on fleet operating costs of between 5% and 15% can be expected.

    The savings are made from a number of areas that are positively impacted,
    such as;

    • Distance (e.g. miles) driven per stop is reduced
    • Fewer miles means lower fuel costs, 
    • Fewer miles means reduced vehicle maintenance costs


    But delivery route scheduling and route optimisation can lead to unexpected benefits in other areas too.

    • Fewer miles and high delivery density leads to increased productivity i.e. more scheduled deliveries per load can lead to delivering more with the same number of vehicles. Additional drivers might not be required which is very important with existing driver shortages.


    • The automation of delivery routes could possibly reduce the number of planners required or free them up to deal with the exceptions.


    • The automation of delivery routes can be incorporated into a dynamic appointment scheduling solution helping to steer customers into selecting delivery slots that are better for your deliveries but also better for the environment and thus also reducing delivery costs.


    • Goods delivered on time and when expected by the customer will also reduce the number of calls to customer services asking “where’s my delivery?”, reducing the work load on customer services too.


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Delivery Reservations

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Route Optimisation

Use clever mathematical algorithms and artificial intelligence to dynamically optimise delivery routes from the latest road network data in real time.

Delivery Route Planning

The creation of optimised delivery routes, allocating resources and refining delivery routes in order to maximise a company's operating efficiency.

Delivery Tracking

Enable customers to track the ETA of their own deliveries and avoid the "where's my delivery?" telephone calls.

Digital Proof of Delivery

Eliminate paper, streamline operations and reduce confirmation of delivery notifications with POD capture and parcel scanning for accuracy on deliveries.

Last Mile Delivery

Improving customer satisfaction with your deliveries, from delivery slot selection to customer tracking apps and digital proof of delivery.


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