When you manage a fleet of drivers – whether three or 30 — it’s no fun having to call and text when to see when they’re available. Even worse, if a driver calls out sick, you don’t even know who can replace them, and you have to scramble at the last minute.
Making scheduling easy is just the tip of the iceberg of what GetSwift Scheduling can do. It’s the Human Resources foundation to your driver fleet and company. It’s where all your employee data lives—from salaries to work history to emergency contacts; where you see their availability at a glance and hours worked; and finally, where you handle their payroll and manage your budget.
The news is—for the first time, GetSwift Scheduling is now seamlessly integrated with your GetSwift driver app, becoming a unique feature in our growing ecosystem of products that make delivery tech easy for any organization to manage on its own. To begin, just sign up!
Features to highlight include Overtime Alerts, where you get alerts whenever an employee is within a certain number of hours of overtime and pay rates are adjusted depending on your state’s rules.
Note the payroll and budgeting features. You set a target budget and track it, week by week, against actual payroll. When you’re ready to run payroll, choose who has approval authority, download any reports you like, and export payroll data to any payroll provider.
ALL OF YOUR HR BASICS
All of your HR basics for your drivers, bikers, and entire team are here in the GetSwift Scheduling app. You can:
Add Jobs, Positions, Salary.
Publish and Assign Shifts.
Each Shift Has its Own Settings that You Choose.
Send out daily/weekly schedules to your employees via email or text messages.
HOW IT CONNECTS TO GETSWIFT DRIVER APP
If you’re using GetSwift, you know that you set up your operation by driver fleet or store. With GetSwift Scheduling, you set up each store or fleet with a schedule, a labor budget, and payroll. The budget is key — as you’ll be able to always know how close you are to hitting that week’s staff budget and work on reducing it in week’s ahead.
DRIVERS GET CONTROL
After you designate the shifts you need, your drivers fill in when they’re available right from their app. Once schedules are set, the drivers will see their upcoming schedule in one view in their app.
A driver can choose to take a break when they want, and then clock back in on their GetSwift app, and that timekeeping is all automatically synced to a timeclock feature and payroll.
CONFIGURE DRIVER SHIFT SCHEDULING HOW YOU LIKE
When it comes to the setting for GetSwift Scheduling you have flexible options to choose scheduling settings that apply to each of your drivers, as a group or individually.
To avoid overtime costs, you can determine the min and max working hours for your drivers.
Set overtime alerts to know when an employee is within a certain number of hours of hitting OT, so you can maneuver and schedule someone else.
You can decide how early you want to allow your drivers to clock-in / go-online.
You can create paid or unpaid breaks for your drivers. They choose, in their app, when they start and stop, and see a countdown clock.
We’re making setup easy, so we’ve created a step-by-step guide to starting with GetSwift scheduling. Let us know you’re interested, and we can turn on GetSwift Scheduling whenever you’re ready. Start Scheduling Shifts.
Want to streamline your whole delivery operation with powerful delivery management software that gives your customers a simple, reliable experience, while offering you and your team a host of next-generation features, all through the cloud? Create a new win-win-win situation for your customers, your drivers, and your business’s bottom-line with GetSwift.
If you’re considering beefing up the home delivery component of your small (or medium, or large!) business, now’s the time to do it.
In the past, home delivery seemed unnecessary for some businesses because most of your customers visited your retail or brick-and-mortar store. Of course, the coronavirus pandemic has accelerated the necessity for businesses to adapt to rapidly-changing consumer behaviors and expectations. If you want to stay ahead of the curve and improve, GetSwift is here to make that transition as simple as possible.
What’s different about our cloud-based delivery management software is our next-generation features, (from advanced dispatching to routing and real-time alerts), the ability to pick and choose which features you need for your business model (i.e., choose between on-demand and pre-scheduled dispatching), and data analytics that are for you alone to keep, among many other features.
In addition, without an advanced SaaS solution to delivery management, growing your business to scale with a robust home delivery service would be extremely challenging. Why is that? There are a number of reasons, but here are just three:
1. Handle more deliveries. Automated and streamlined dispatching, routing, and driver and customer communication are essential if you are to grow your home delivery business to scale.
2. Deliver faster. Our platform helps you deliver on time, which is essential to keep customers from not returning to order and perishable items such as food at a higher quality. Most importantly, our clients have also told us that when they focus on delivery speed and quality, that’s a big driver for business growth.
3. Increase accountability. Keep your driver happy and simplify their jobs with an app, and keep them reliable by viewing their performance metrics.
That’s just to name a few of the advantages of using GetSwift. Interested?
Delivery Logistics For Home Delivery Food Businesses
One type of business that benefits highly from our software are restaurants and other food-related businesses. You could absolutely do it alone on a small scale. However, partnering with GetSwift makes implementation far easier (and quicker, since you don’t have to build your own solution) and much faster to scale.
For example, the Australian fast-food company Red Rooster transformed its delivery management platform across 200+ franchises with GetSwift and was able to reduce delivery times by an average of 25 minutes after just one year. Today, Red Rooster is the #1 self-delivery fast-food company in Australia, other than pizza chains.
Another success story was the restaurant group Hoot Company in Alberta, Canada. They were looking for a simple, lean, affordable delivery software platform for them to integrate into, and chose GetSwift. After just three weeks of offering home delivery, deliveries were up from zippo to more than 250 per week.
When it comes to promoting growth and transitioning smoothly and rapidly to a home delivery model for businesses, GetSwift delivery software consistently provides results.
Delivery Solutions Without Needing Third Parties
Third-party delivery companies often charge fees upwards of 30% of each order for delivery and marketing costs. For many businesses, that’s just not a viable option. This was exactly the case for Orbital Kitchens. Since Orbital started using GetSwift, within a period of about three months, average daily deliveries climbed from 200 to 700 — more than a 300% increase.
Many businesses have successfully adapted to the new home delivery consumer demands. If you are looking for a full, integrated suite of features that help you avoid having to work through third-party delivery companies and improve efficiencies and control across the board, GetSwift is the obvious choice.
Getting dispatching right can significantly reduce your time to deliver, which is one of the best ways to keep customers happy and coming back, and keep them from leaving. And so we’re proud to introduce the beta version of our next generation dispatching algorithm, called On-Demand Dispatching. We’re excited to tell you all about it:
The biggest upgrade is that your orders (or jobs), that are coming in on the fly will automatically batch a pair of deliveries with just one driver whenever possible, minimizing the number of drivers you’ll need and maximizing vehicle capacity.
In the past, if you wanted to batch multiple jobs with one driver in our app, you’d have to do so manually—now, jobs are grouped together automatically and more efficiently!
One important note. This algorithm is suited for on-demand delivery and won’t work if your business focuses on pre-scheduled deliveries (for instance, if you schedule all your deliveries at the start of every day). However, for business likes that, we’re unveiling an improved algorithm as well, so stay tuned for our next blog post.
What Stays The Same
We’re still giving you all the choice to dispatch in the way that makes the most sense for your business.
That means you can still choose among five other dispatching methods: Notify All Drivers, Manually Notify, Smart Notification, Notify Specific Driver, Expanding Proximity. However, if your bread and butter is on-demand deliveries, we recommend our new beta algorithm. It’s going to speed up your deliveries and keep the number of drivers involved to a minimum.
How does the algorithm decide which driver gets the job?
In essence, It accomplishes that by giving a score to all possible order assignments by taking into account the algorithm’s goals (to minimize the number of vehicles, travel time, and lateness) and any hard “constraints” that would add extra time to a delivery. The lowest score is the best score – that’s the driver or handler who gets the assignment.
How will On Demand Dispatching Help You?
One big result is the new algorithm is better at batching jobs with one driver, as long as it’s from the same pickup spot. This has the potential to save you on fuel, shift hours, and increase your delivery speed, which helps our clients retain and grow customers.
The new algorithm also helps by eliminating the need for you to choose between our various dispatching models, giving you one unified algorithm that uses the intelligence from hundreds of thousands of deliveries that have taken place on our platform.
In sum, our new dispatching tech will save you time, increase delivery speed, and simplify your dispatching, all helping you make your delivery operation even more efficient.
In today’s on-demand marketplace, it’s the very last step of the logistics process that is the most critical. The journey from warehouse, restaurant, or store to the final destination is what’s referred to as the last-mile of order delivery, and how you manage this critical function can make all the difference in the success of your business.
When it comes to last-mile delivery challenges, you’ll often hear the terms route planning and route optimization — and it’s even likely that the two will be used interchangeably. However, there’s a significant difference between planning and optimizing, and practicing one without the other could mean significantly higher delivery costs. Here’s what you need to know about route planning versus route optimization.
Route Planning: The Old Way of Doing Things
In simple terms, route planning takes a predetermined list of destinations and puts them in the most relevant and efficient order while primarily focusing on the shortest distance and the fastest time. There are many free route planners out there (such as Google maps) but they can’t handle the variables associated with a complex delivery business.
Route Optimization: A Necessity For Delivery Businesses
Route optimization, on the other hand, uses a complex system of algorithms to evaluate hundreds and even thousands of variables to create the optimum delivery route. Route optimization software takes into account things such as driver schedules, vehicle capacities, driver coverage areas, and delivery window times to create the best, and most efficient route.
With the right route optimization software, you can grow your business from one or two drivers to thousands, and you can increase productivity while reducing delivery costs — two more key factors in building a successful delivery business.
Save Time and Money Through Route Optimization
The main challenge of last-mile delivery is that it is costly. That’s because it involves shipping smaller quantities to more locations. To offset these higher costs, it’s necessary to focus on planning and efficiency and the best way to do that is through route optimization. Here’s a closer look at the benefits of route optimization.
Reduce Transportation Costs
Fuel and labor are two of the most important factors to consider in your logistics cost equation. That’s because a large percentage of your total delivery cost can be attributed to them. Allowing your driver to spend all day on deliveries that should only take a few hours will eat away at your bottom line. And, going just a few miles out of the way for one delivery may not be the end of the world, but when you multiply that by several drivers and dozens of deliveries every day, that extra gas money can really add up.
Being able to shave time on your deliveries is not only good for boosting productivity, but it also has a positive effect on customer service. If you’re able to deliver goods faster than your competitors, this gives you a distinct advantage and shoppers will choose you over someone else if they know they can get what they want faster.
Grow Your Business
Driver capacity can be a bottleneck for delivery businesses. In order to invest in more drivers and more vehicles, you have to have the capital to support them. A better way to manage this is to first take a look at your current productivity. Is it possible that you could be doing more with the resources you have, without compromising customer service or safety? Route optimization can boost productivity by allowing you to do more, and do it more efficiently. This is the key to unlocking your growth potential.
Choose GetSwift For Route Optimization Software
Effective and efficient driver routing is one of the most important controllable factors for a last-mile delivery business. If you’re still just putting together route plans based on the location of the destinations, then you’re missing out. Delivery route optimization software can help you account for an unlimited number of variables so that you can crush the delivery business.
GetSwift has developed delivery route management software that will not only help you with managing your driver’s routes but with all of the elements of your delivery business. From dispatching and real-time driver tracking to automatic customer alerts and an easy-to-use mobile driver app, GetSwift offers everything you need to run your business now, and to prepare it for the future.
Whether you employ a large fleet of cross-country drivers or a small number of local couriers, driver retention is a top priority for many business owners. Experienced drivers are usually capable of delivering more goods in a shorter period of time, increasing your capacity and saving your business money.
The demand for delivery has been steadily increasing over the past few years, and now with COVID-19, more people than ever before are taking advantage of home delivery services. In fact, 37 percent of U.S. consumers are turning to contactless delivery more than before, according to a Salesforce survey. This means many could be seeing more business through delivery than through their brick-and-mortar stores — as long as they have enough drivers to fulfill orders.
Businesses that are able to keep up with demand during these trying times — and do it in a way that meets customer expectations — will likely come out ahead and grow their long-term customer base well after the pandemic is over. To do this, it’s essential to focus on driver retention and last-mile route optimization software can help you do just that.
Safe Drivers Are Happy Drivers
A top priority for any employer is to ensure that your staff has a safe and secure working environment. This holds true for employees working in an office, a warehouse, a production facility, or driving a vehicle. While you may not be able to prevent all accidents from occurring, you can take measures to ensure your drivers aren’t overloaded with an unrealistic delivery schedule that requires them to work long hours or back-to-back shifts.
Last-mile route optimization software can help them complete their deliveries faster and more efficiently so they can get more done in less time. A mobile driver app also helps to keep them connected to the office and the rest of the team so if they do run into an issue while on the road, their location can be tracked.
Work Smarter, Not Harder
Manually mapping routes and managing an ever-changing delivery schedule can be stressful, not to mention inefficient. Constantly having to change routes or update your driver by phone can make an already challenging job even more difficult. By enlisting the help of route optimization software, your drivers don’t have to worry about where they need to go next or the best way to get there. With the right technology, they can receive turn-by-turn directions and real-time route updates, making their job that much easier.
Acknowledge Good Performance
Like most employees, drivers seek acknowledgment for a job well done. Although they may be out of sight and working solo most of the time, it’s important to still track — and recognize — good performance. With software like that from GetSwift, you can easily track KPIs like the number of deliveries per day, percent of on-time deliveries, or customer feedback ratings. Using that data to show your appreciation will go a long way toward helping to retain your best drivers.
Empower Drivers With the Tools They Need To Do a Good Job
In the past, many delivery drivers simply had to pick something up from point A and drop it off at point B. Now, drivers are expected to make multiple deliveries along a route, all at a precise moment in time. If they miss that time buy just a few minutes, it could result in a failed delivery or an unhappy customer.
With drivers being held to such a high standard, it only makes sense to give them the tools they need to succeed. Last-mile route optimization software can help them find the most efficient routes, communicate unexpected delays with the customer, and protect their reputation with an electronic means of documenting proof of delivery.
Improve Driver Retention With GetSwift
GetSwift’s last-mile route optimization software is the complete solution for all of your delivery needs. It includes tools for easier dispatching, more efficient routing, and improved communication between your drivers, customers, and your office. It comes with an easy-to-use driver app that will provide your drivers with the information they need at every stage of the delivery process.
Learn more about GetSwift and how our software can help you with driver retention and success in the delivery business — contact a member of our team or sign up for a free 30-day trial.
If you’re in the last-mile delivery business then you know how important it is to optimize each step in the process to keep costs down. The combination of multiple stops and potentially smaller order sizes can create significant inefficiencies compared to a more traditional logistics model where items are shipped in large truckload quantities to a warehouse or a select few locations.
Reverse Logistics Explained
Standard last-mile logistics involves moving goods from one store or warehouse to the consumer. Reverse logistics is—you guessed it—moving goods in the opposite direction. An example would be a delivery driver picking up a return from a customer and taking it back to restock or throw out. Or, a more routine example for certain companies like a water or milk delivery service, it includes regularly picking up empty bottles from a customer.
Why Reverse Logistics Is Important
There are many different reasons that a delivery driver may have to transport goods back to where they came from, and these return trips need to be considered in your overall delivery cost equation as well as their impact on the customer experience. Planned returns, such as picking up empty milk bottles, are easier to manage with the right kind of software–such as our integrated eCommerce & Delivery software which gives drivers built-in options to pick up bottle returns. It’s the unplanned returns that are more difficult and can add significant costs from the extra time and fuel. For businesses delivering perishable goods, the cost can be even greater if a return means the product won’t be able to be resold, and instead, will need to be disposed of.
Minimizing unplanned returns, and optimizing how they are managed when they do occur, should be a key part of any delivery strategy. While you likely can’t bring returns down to zero, you can control the number of certain returns, including having to return to a location because of failed delivery attempts. With our delivery management software, you automatically send out SMS alerts the moment an order goes out for delivery, including sending the customer a tracking link, and an always-updated ETA so that customers know when they need to be home. In turn, customers can reply with a text message about needing to change the delivery time. This way, if there needs to be a change, this gives you the chance to correct it before you deliver, rather than having to make a return trip.
It’s important to remember that all returns, whether planned or unplanned, are part of the overall customer experience. An incorrect order doesn’t have to mean a lost customer if the return is handled properly. That’s why it’s vital to create a strategy for handling returns promptly and efficiently, and include methods for communicating with customers and your drivers.
How To Optimize Reverse Logistics
To start, of course, you’ve got to enlist the help of the right cloud-based delivery management tech. But, it has to be the right one for your business. If you’re a subscription-based business like farm or CSA, and your drivers have a very similar route every time they deliver, you’re going to want subscription delivery software with purpose-built features for returns, last-minute order changes, and box, bag, or bottle returns–all synced over the cloud in real-time from your driver’s mobile phones to your office. Those features, and much more, are built into our Delivery Biz Pro software.
If on the other hand, you operate a restaurant or shop, and it’s all about on-demand deliveries that are less predictable, you’ll want to look into our flagship last-mile delivery software: it has the ultimate route optimization tech, that takes in hundreds of inputs from traffic to weather to added or subtracted stops to make your routes extremely efficient. It’s also got a suite of customizable alerts to keep your customers up-to-date so that they always know where their order is, plus customers, can choose proof of delivery and ask the driver to take a photo of the package (especially if it’s being delivered contact-free), so thateveryone is on the same page and any mistakes can be immediately corrected.
Find Out More About How GetSwift Can Help You With Reverse Logistics
If you’re looking for a comprehensive last-mile delivery software that can help you optimize your delivery business. It offers features such as automatic dispatching, route optimization, real-time driver tracking, customer alerts, and proof of delivery — and everything can be accessed from our user-friendly mobile app.
Are you interested in learning more about how our delivery software can help you minimize and manage returns? Contact us today to schedule a free demo.
A focus on the last mile of delivery — the final leg of shipping your product to the buyer’s door — has been a growing trend for businesses for several years, but there are challenges. It’s expensive and there are lots of inefficiencies to overcome. In fact, some estimates say last mile delivery comprises 53% of the total cost of shipping.
We’re going to explore why last-mile delivery is so challenging, and what business owners can do to overcome those challenges. Smart planning, a focus on customer satisfaction, and on-demand and flexible delivery software are just a few of the things we’ll discuss. Read on to learn about three of the main challenges in last-mile delivery and how GetSwift’s platform addresses each one.
A Few Last-Mile Delivery Challenges
Let’s start with three thorny challenges.
1. Multiple Stops
Rather than traveling to and from one warehouse or office, with last-mile delivery, drivers need to make several individual stops to make their deliveries. Each stop along a driver’s route takes time. There’s the time involved with driving to the area and finding the exact home or place of business. They may have to stop for several traffic lights or stop signs. Once they arrive, there’s the time involved with walking up to the building, possibly interacting with a customer, and then walking back to their vehicle only to have to do it all over again many times throughout the day.
2. Dense Neighborhoods
Think of how quickly you can get 40,000 pounds of goods to a destination when you’re using a semi on a national highway to get to one or two warehouse locations. Then, think of how long it would take a driver in a small van to get the same amount of goods to homes and businesses scattered throughout a congested urban area — it takes significantly more time. One reason why is the multiple stops we discussed above, but it’s also because of the reduced travel speed.
Last-mile drivers are often traveling in areas with lower posted speed limits — like small rural cities, busy downtowns, and residential areas. In densely populated areas they also have to deal with pedestrians and public transportation as well as traffic congestion. All of these things mean that to deliver directly to someone’s door, it’s going to take more time.
3. Failed and Missed Deliveries
A common problem with direct-to-consumer deliveries is a failure to complete the transaction. This can be because of any number of reasons including an incorrect address, the customer not at home, or the customer unaware of when the delivery was going to arrive. A failed delivery is not only bad business in the eyes of your customers, but it also creates additional problems in the form of redelivery cost, or even worse, lost business and negative customer reviews.
Three Solutions In Last-Mile Delivery
Let’s look at solutions to these three major problems, one by one.
1. Real-Time Routing
When you and your driver have GetSwift’s cloud-based platform, it’s all real-time routing, so if there’s a traffic jam or an added stop, that data automatically updates the driver’s route to provide the most efficient route along with the order or stops that now makes the most sense. Saving your time and keeping customers happier. Learn more about how our AI team improves your routing.
2. Routing + Scheduling Analytics
While there’s no complete solution to having to move at lower speeds, you have lots of options to make your routes much more efficient. If your business takes advance scheduled orders, you can use our software to see how long a route will take at certain times and try to schedule your deliveries for faster times (such as delivering at night). You can also see which zip codes are too expensive to deliver to, and either decline customers who order from there or, for instance, automatically require them to make an order of a certain size.
You have many more options to save time on routes. If your delivering on demand, you can look at the analytics section of GetSwift’s platform, like our client Flowers A Bunch did, to track all your trip times in a week to analyze what routes were the least efficient, and look into why: was it one driver who you need to talk to, for instance, about strategies for getting more efficient, or is it always one route that causes problems. The opposite may be true as well: one route or neighborhood may be particularly efficient for your drivers, and you can look to increase your marketing from your store near that route to focus even more on those customers.
3. Reliable Network + Live Driver Tracking
Let’s turn this one around. The source of a failed delivery is varied: one course could unfortunately be a driver having the wrong address. That’s why it’s important to make sure your delivery management system is robustly built with the most accurate locational data and a reliable network. If your drivers are out delivering and all of a sudden the network is down, you’d not only have to scramble to get them the right addresses but it can lead to missed deliveries, and it’s hard to afford a day like that. Your drivers want to be out in the field with the confidence that they’re on the most reliable network, and that if they were to encounter a problem, they have a customer support team ready to help solve it, fast.
Another way to turn around missed deliveries are real-time alerts, tracking links, and ETAs, along with open two-way communication between the driver and customer, so that a customer knows exactly when the driver will arrive. To minimize the likelihood of any mix-up, customers can also request that the driver record proof of delivery, including taking a photo of the package.
Fix Your Last Mile With GetSwift
Three problems and three solutions. Talk to us about what challenges you’re having, and hear from us about how our tech, onboarding, and customer support will solve them.
What exactly has AI’s impact on logistics been, and where will AI continue to improve the last mile? And what does this innovation mean for a company like yours, involved in delivery?
Luckily, we have our resident AI expert, Jim Barnebee, who is also our VP of Infrastructure. He’s been digging into components of AI for over 15 years so that we all don’t have to.
It couldn’t be a more important topic. 98 percent of logistics companies have said that data-driven decision-making is essential to their future success, and Big Data and Artificial Intelligence go hand in hand. AI in logistics is also where companies can get a lot of bang for their investment—over half the cost of all delivery logistics is contained within the first and last mile of the logistics supply chain.
Recently Jim appeared on twopodcasts, where he answered lots of big questions on our mind related to AI’s impact on and logistics. Here’s a summary of the questions he was asked:
First, what does every company, especially smaller companies, wanting to up their logistics game need to know?
First, the fundamentals. Perhaps the biggest leap forward that’s already taken place for logistics companies is the cloud. It takes an enormous amount of computing power to constantly calculate and recalculate the best route from Point A to Point B depending on changing conditions. Fortunately, small companies do not have to invest in that cloud infrastructure or AI expertise because they’ve been able to hire a Platform as a Service (PaaS) or Software as a Service (SaaS) such as GetSwift to handle that power for them. That’s been a major step forward, already, for logistics and delivery companies.
Logistics companies have invested big in robotics automation, especially in the crucial and costly first mile of delivery. Think of warehouses, autonomous drones, and self-driving vehicles, all of which have grown in importance during the Covid-19 pandemic. Investing in these areas can push margins higher and so there’s been big strides here.
What are the areas where AI can give you the most bang for your buck in last mile delivery?
Over half the cost of all delivery logistics is contained within the first and last mile of the logistics supply chain. Each company will want to look at ROI. They should ask, “What are the areas or components that would improve their last mile delivery journey and yield the biggest ROI for customers?” It turns out the answer is usually in improving Dispatch, Tracking, Route Optimization, and Customer Notifications.
Can you go through each of these areas, one by one, and talk about AI’s impact?
Dispatching is being optimized using AI in determining the best way to make sure the best person or vehicle or even company gets an order for delivery. Many factors may play into these types of decisions, other than the obvious closest person working to the pickup and drop-off.
Such things as who has capacity to move the item, who has a more fuel efficient vehicle, who has to pay tolls, even pay or benefits differentials or partial load optimization (like sharing of space) can play into these decisions.
In Tracking, optimizations such as how often to request a location, status, what kind of information to track, etc., can all play into decision making. Some companies will improve fuel efficiency or driver alertness by tracking how many miles at what speed drivers log between rest breaks. Or perhaps if GPS directs the shortest route but that route has tolls, it might be cheaper once the tracking is optimized to take a little longer but pay less in tolls using more efficient vehicles.
A lot of work has gone into Route Optimization. In last mile delivery, a company has to move people or goods not just from Point A to Point B, but from Point A to Point F, with stops and changing conditions along the way. Because of AI, there is a way to pipe in real-time data–traffic, weather conditions, construction, and more—along with dynamic changes such as added stops—into an algorithm that can continuously update the route to make it the most efficient. There may actually be 300 or 400 changing conditions along the way, and there is a race in the logistics and delivery industry to integrate those changing conditions with your systems to come up with the most efficient routes.
Now, you can also think about how business analytics can improve your route. Let’s think of a big trucking company that delivers 10,000 packages a day in New York City. How many packages get delivered quickly, by how many trucks, to how many places, crossing how many bridges, and what’s the toll cost? Something as simple as: if all of your trucks take a different bridge, which actually increases your routing time, but all of the tolls are 50 cents less. You’ve taken an extra 30 minutes to deliver the package, which may not cost you anything in customer satisfaction but it’s saved you $5,000 a day in toll fees. That’s the kind of thing you can do when you have access to big data, giving you the business impact of making these kinds of decisions.
Customers expect to know what’s happening every step of the way with their orders now. Being able to provide tracking of packages has become standard for large companies in most circumstances, and cloud platform providers have made this capability available to smaller businesses who could never supply it on their own.
That’s just a snapshot of what Jim’s team works on. To hear more about AI’s impact on logistics and delivery industry, and how Jim sees AI impacting the present and future of logistics, check out Jim’s appearances on these two podcasts:
As the pandemic continues, the restaurant industry is, of course, not back to business as usual. Although many establishments have been allowed to open for on-premise dining, limitations that support social distancing have meant that customers have looked to delivery, takeout, curbside, and drive-thru to fill the gap, among other creative solutions.
But the increase in off-premise dining isn’t a fast trend that will go away, the data shows. Off-premise sales were already growing four times faster than dine-in before the pandemic. Going forward, the restaurant landscape will likely continue to look different than it did before 2020. That means if you’re a restaurant owner, now is the time to up your delivery game; the best way to accomplish that is to reduce your reliance on third-party apps by launching in-house delivery.
Benefits of Doing Your Own Delivery
At the beginning of the pandemic, many restaurants with limited or no delivery capabilities had no other choice than to employ third-party delivery services to get food and beverages to their customers. While they may have seemed like a good option at the time, the exorbitant commission fees, often around 30 percent or more, would often eat away at any possibility of making a profit. Bringing delivery in-house eliminates the middleman and therefore allows you to keep much more of your hard-earned money.
Not only does keeping delivery close to home increase your margin, but it also allows you to have better control over food quality and the entire customer experience. Customers who receive a late order or get food that has been temperature abused often resort to blaming the restaurant, not the delivery service. By maintaining control of the journey from the kitchen to the destination, restaurant owners can ensure a safe and positive experience for their customers.
Customer experience is the key factor that will foster brand loyalty and keep people coming back time and again — regardless of what is going on in the world. Even if required to stay home and self-quarantine, delivery of a favorite food or knowing that you’re supporting a favorite local business can make things feel a little more like normal.
Tips For Bringing Delivery In-House
Managing the day-to-day operations of a restaurant business is already challenging, so trying to add delivery to your list of responsibilities may seem overwhelming. However, the most important thing to remember is that you don’t have to do it all at once. You can start by evaluating your menu and selecting a handful of your most popular items that travel well. Paring down your menu and creating one specifically for delivery will help reduce complexity and set your delivery efforts up for success.
Next, hire a couple of drivers — or bring back waiters, bartenders of bar-backs that you may have had to lay off after the pandemic hit — and ask them do what they do best–customer service; this time, it’s just on the road. You don’t have to have an entire fleet up and running at the start, but make sure to keep a close eye on how it grows so you can be prepared to meet demand.
Finally, get the word out about your delivery offerings in whatever way possible. Publish it on social media, send emails to your subscriber list, and hand out fliers to your in-house diners. Creating awareness and staying top of mind is how you ensure that the next time someone wants a meal delivered to their home or business, they think of you.
Bring Delivery In House With GetSwift
The prospect of launching in-house delivery, including hiring your own drivers, can be daunting. But getting started is actually much faster and much easier than you think. Your team will be able to get the hang of it pretty quickly — just listen to our customers — and the rewards of going in-house, for your culture, morale, and bottom line, are too big to pass up. Interested in getting started with a free one-month trial? Contact a member of our team today to learn how we can help.
Just about every business from the largest to the smallest wasn’t prepared for the monumental shift that has been occurring in delivery due to COVID-19. Food delivery was 300 times more popular in April than it was just a month prior. Another report looking at the impact on grocery sales estimates that online grocery sales will grow 40% in 2020 due to COVID.
Double and even triple-digit growth means significant challenges in trying to fill orders, meet expected delivery times, and communicate with customers. Those who adapt and succeed at delivery will come out ahead and delivery service software is the easiest way to do just that. Here’s how GetSwift can help you with some of your biggest challenges with managing drivers.
1. Save Time
Managing orders and assigning drivers can be a resource drain. If you’re still using whiteboards and online calendars and then manually calling or texting your drivers, you know that it can be very labor-intensive. Any day-of and last-minute changes (and there will be changes) require you to completely rework the schedule and communicate the changes with everyone involved. Right from your GetSwift dashboard, you can view all jobs, automatically dispatch orders to drivers, reassign a job to a different driver, track all drivers in real-time, and so much more, all saving a significant amount of time.
Concerned about the time it will take to get up to speed with a new system? We’ve designed our software so that you can be up and running quickly. Just see how easy it is to Get Started and take a driver online so they can log in to the mobile app.
2. Improve Communication
With a constant stream of orders and frequent changes, communication with your drivers is key. With just the click of a button, our delivery service software allows you to manage jobs and relay any changes instantly. For instance, you can assign, transfer, or cancel jobs. Need to reprioritize which orders get delivered first? Our app lets you manually reorder them and then it sends the driver notification of the change. You can even limit tasks or change the capacity of an individual driver.
3. Track Driver Status
You don’t have to wait and wonder where your driver is or try to contact them to see if they’ve completed a delivery. Now you can track your drivers in real-time on the GetSwift map. Color-coded driver icons tell you the status of each driver: whether they’ve available, already accepted a job, or they’re en route to their destinations. You can even check on the progress of each individual driver by seeing how many of their jobs they still have to complete and their ETA at their next destination.
4. Route Optimization
You can also stop planning out your daily routes (which are often bound to change) at the start every day. With GetSwift, you can automatically optimize the route of each driver with a click, and our algorithm is not only going to select the best route, but it’s also going to be continuously searching for an even better route using real-time data (on traffic and dozens of other factors). The result leads to faster delivery, a major way to increase customer satisfaction.
5. Easy Access To Performance Data
Being able to track metrics and KPIs helps you to keep a pulse on your business. It also gives you the information you need to identify and resolve problems, become more efficient, and make a plan for growth. With GetSwift, you’ll have quick access to high-level performance indicators such as the number of deliveries per day or average delivery time. You can also generate reports that give you insight into every area of your delivery business. Simply choose the report you wish to run, such as key delivery stats or driver feedback ratings and you instantly have data to sort, filter, download, or export.
Manage Your Drivers More Efficiently With GetSwift
Are you interested in learning more about how GetSwift’s delivery service software can help your business grow? Contact us today to learn how we can help.