Closely knit with delivering a seamless customer experience is logistics’ age-old last mile challenge. Even though businesses have moved on from brick and mortar practices of executing logistics but solving the last mile challenge remains a glaring problem for many businesses across the globe.
This is where embracing a robust last mile delivery software that addresses your industry’s unique challenges gathers mammoth importance.
Here are eight features that you need to look for before investing in a last mile delivery software.
1. Adaptive Design
To optimize delivery, a last mile delivery software should be able to add events, sub-processes, and gateways on the fly. It should be flexible enough to adapt to changing delivery needs as well.
Think of this. Your last mile delivery platform encounters a situation where there is a failed delivery. The platform should have the capability to change the business process on the fly to ensure that the parcel goes back to the hub and re-scheduled for delivery.
Another key consideration when investing in a last mile delivery software is determining how fast it can go live. Long implementation cycles and lack of interoperability with existing supply chain and logistics systems will only result in poor ROI and unprecedented business disruptions.
2. Intelligent Dispatching Capabilities
To match up to the demands of savvy customers, businesses need to optimize dispatching processes. A modern last mile delivery software should be able to allocate tasks depending on the resources available and destination of a parcel.
Consider this. You own a restaurant chain across the city. It’s dinner time and your kitchen is flooded with orders. Great! But what’s not so great is that most of your road warriors are already out for delivery and most of them in areas with multiple orders, but have no clue about it. Result? Unnecessarily long delivery time, poor productivity, horrible customer experience, cancelled orders and so on.
Last mile delivery platforms with smart dispatching capabilities can quickly and intelligently outsource delivery to nearest third party delivery providers to ensure rapid scale. It can also optimize delivery routes depending on the number of orders placed from a particular location. These significantly optimize the number of deliveries successfully closed per day.
3. Granular Monitoring
A last mile delivery software must be able to drastically increase visibility into delivery processes, irrespective of deliveries being carried out by in-house personnel or third parties. It should have built-in capabilities to live-track orders right from the beginning.
For instance, if you manage a delivery fleet, a last mile delivery software should be able to tell you when was an order placed, who placed it, the customer’s location, who will deliver it, when was the order picked up, the current location of the order, exact ETA and if it was successfully delivered. Such software should provide the same level of transparency and live tracking capabilities to the customer as well, right from when she places an order
4. Mobile First
If you are building interfaces for a ‘desktop or a laptop-type environment’ first, and then optimizing the same for mobile, we have news for you. That process is obsolete!
Today’s supply chain heads and managers
5. Advanced Communications
Another aspect of a great last mile delivery software is its ability to facilitate seamless engagement between peer-to-peer, manager-to-agent and agent-to-customer. An advanced last mile delivery software can enhance communication between all delivery stakeholders, including customers, by leveraging online chat, quick intimation emails, and timely mobile notifications.
6. Data Analytics
W. Edwards Deming once said--In God we trust. All others must bring data. That’s the power of data and business across the globe are leveraging data analytics to stay ahead of its competitors.
By leveraging historical data and analytics capabilities, a modern last mile delivery software should provide a customizable and drilled down view of the performance of delivery executives, 3PLs and routes.
It should also be able to convert raw data into a dashboard consisting of reports and charts that equips supply chain and logistics owners to execute data-driven decision-making. Hence empowering businesses to quickly perform complex analysis and uncover powerful knowledge at the touch of a single button.
Also, by leveraging advanced predictive analytics, a last mile delivery software should help businesses become proactive when it comes to knowing delays, assigning tasks, predicting ETAs, eliminating chances of theft and pilferage.
A last mile delivery software must ensure proper archival of data to address audit trail issues and generate accurate KPIs to create better SLAs. It should also have capabilities to generate electronic proof of deliveries to reduce manual errors and malpractices.
A last mile delivery software with superior tracking features can help supply chain and logistics companies stay compliant with regulations pertaining to speed, routes, and environment.
8. Data Encryption
To ensure rapid scalability, greater computing power and high levels of storage capacity, advanced last mile delivery software mostly leverage the cloud. Hence, it’s absolutely necessary that your last mile software guarantees end-to-end encryption.
Gartner highlighted that the worldwide supply chain management software revenue grew by 13.9% at the beginning of 2018. So, it’s safe to assume that this space will only get more populated in the coming years. But not every software will meet your business needs. So, choose wisely.
Paperwork, rekeying data and not having access to key information are all factors that are detrimental to the productivity of the field workforce.
Electronic proof of delivery increases the speed and efficiency of last-mile delivery. It reduces manual errors, eliminates paperwork, and minimizes chances of manipulation.
Lack of visibility into real-time execution is a serious problem because that leads to a situation where key stakeholders are completely unaware of what the leaks in the system are which are causing significant drain on productivity and resources.