Route Optimization Isn’t Just for the Big Fleets!
That “last-mile” really counts…against the bottom line.
From grocery delivery companies delivering produce from warehouse to home, or to service providers such as auto tow trucks picking up a distressed vehicle, the final step in getting to the end client is the most tenuous part of the overall solutions chain. A review of more than 100 peer-reviewed industry journals about transportation and logistics, reveals up to 53% of delivery or service costs in North America are specifically attributed to this final leg or “last-mile.” But as we all know, getting to the “finish line” is the only true quantifiable measure of success or failure for businesses of any size.
Did you know… The final leg of delivery, or “the last-mile” accounts for as much as 53% of delivery costs in North America.
The delivery challenge: why routing is never routine.
Route optimization today uses sophisticated computer algorithms to suggest the most efficient means to get from one point to another. Yet despite these amazing advances in technology, it might surprise you to learn that most small to mid-size businesses (SMBs) plan out their daily delivery and service routes using rather conventional methods from just simply relying on memory, manually writing down the routes for the day, or plotting out their routes using spreadsheets. But this manual “day-to-day” approach quickly adds up to in terms of time and resources, including at least several hours each week in lost productivity for the manager in charge of routing, for the driver in sub-optimal delivery routing, as well as the associated costs in fuel. Less visible
The manual approach adds up quickly, with several hours lost each week in productivity for the manager in-charge of routing, for the driver in sub-optimal routes, the associated fuel costs – as well as the impact on customer satisfaction.
(but equally costly) is the impact on customer satisfaction or retention. Of course, the complexity of manual routing increases exponentially when there are several drivers for the business, multiple stops, or any unpredictable (but not uncommon) issues like traffic, weather, or last-minute orders. And without a dedicated multi-routing solution, tracking drivers in real-time becomes challenging – if not impossible.
Leveraging technology to (so much) more with your day…
Route optimization allows SMBs to increase efficiencies, save on employee and fuel costs, and (perhaps most importantly) to save time. And time saved on routing means more time to concentrate on other parts of the business –including higher-quality customer and employee satisfaction. Providers in today’s COVID-19 pandemic environment face greater mounting pressure to deliver or provide more service at a lower cost, expecting faster completion time a well as increased control over their experience. Utilizing automated dispatching and routing increases revenue and allows for more deliveries with the same number of vehicles.
Using automated dispatching and routing increases revenue and allows for more deliveries with the same number of vehicles. A distinct advantage for SMBs in today’s competitive environment.
Artificial Intelligence and the next generation of routing software.
AI advancements have changed the game of route optimization using machine learning capabilities to continually retrieve data, learn from it, and analyze new ways for a strategy to ensure the most efficient routes are taken in real-time. However, the actual optimization is only as valuable as the input data provided and most companies continue to not take advantage of this technology making it realistically impossible to optimize what the business itself cannot measure. In fact, route optimization eliminates the guesswork and uncertainty hindering businesses that depend on it from realizing their true potential.
Therefore, route optimization is the best way to avoid minimize these lost opportunity costs and with the technology already here at your fingertips it is imperative to take advantage of it.
The future of AI is already here today and the companies not taking advantage of it will be at a severe disadvantage to their competitors as the technology gap widens.
Vehicle route optimization is a rapidly growing emerging industry in the US that is part of a $10 billion global industry that is here to stay. Many stages of the overall steps to the final “last-mile” have undergone dramatic technological overhauls in the last few years, however it is the last-mile that has ironically been saved as the “best for last.” With nearly all businesses expected to use AI automated route planning soon, it is imperative that SMBs adopt a solution as quickly as possible for maximum competitive advantage. Implementing one that is cost effective to your business size is essential as price ranges are all over the place with hidden costs for additional feature sets.
Here are the Top 5 Key Benefits for SMBs Adopting a Vehicle Route Optimization Software Solution:
Reduced Labor Costs: Time is money for your business and eliminating time spent on planning routes allows you to get back to the primary focus: your customers. Using vehicle route optimization software, you can essentially “set and forget it” as you can allow AI to do the work of a “million” manual route planners. Drivers will appreciate it too since they can get where they need to be in the most efficient time possible and customers will be delighted since NO ONE prefers later versus sooner.
Reduced Operating Costs: Fuel costs usually account for the vast majority of operating expenses and with vehicle route optimization you can cut down on any fuel spent to the least amount possible to get from one point to all the others. This not only saves depreciation on your vehicles but enhances overall vehicle utilization allowing for more jobs per vehicle – generating increased revenue and cost savings for your business immediately.
Greater Transparency: With vehicle route optimization software you shouldn’t have to second guess on what’s going at any moment and it allows you to evaluate the productivity of each driver based on key performance metrics updated daily into a concise report to easily identify any problem areas. Traditionally this has been nearly impossible to do on a quantifiable basis, but with new technologies it allows businesses management to identify trouble spots to remedy instantly.
Customer Experience: Track your fleet in real-time up to the second to show what has been done and who is where. Clients in very demanding industries that require vehicle route optimization have a low or even nil tolerance for being late. With technology in place for realtime location tracking, clients are kept up to date by the second on when their driver will arrive and any issues.
Return on Investment: A good vehicle route optimization should take minutes to set up and seconds for the immediate cost savings to materialize. Time should not be spent on integrating the software to existing IT infrastructure as it should be deployed readily in the cloud and instantly compatible with existing systems in place. The payback period should be instantly covered by the amount of time and money saved (as well as the other intangibles) within the first few days.
Interplai Direct provides SMBs with a comprehensive all-in-one vehicle routing optimization solution. It is available on the cloud (no hardware investment required) at the lowest price for businesses of any size – no hidden costs or fees. Other solutions often feature “premium” packages with drastic price mark-ups for novel features or even charge on the number of routes placed. In fact, Interplai Direct is free for businesses with 3 or fewer drivers and just an additional $15 per month for each additional driver with unlimited data use (lowest price among its competitors).
Unlike its competitors, Interplai is strongly interested in growing and continuing to partner with your business through the entire cycle as your complete last-mile delivery solution for the future and fully committed in providing a customized AI software approach unique to your specific business today.
For more information or to contact Interplai please email at: firstname.lastname@example.org