27 September 2018

Three reasons why you should be route planning

Getting goods from A to B may seem a simple enough task at first glance. Yet, as any business responsible for logistical operations can attest, there are countless factors that can impact the efficiency and performance of your fleet out in the field.

While some of these may be out of your control, other factors can be controlled and mitigated by optimising the route planning processes that keep your fleet moving. Effective route planning not only means the difference between a delivery service that earns repeat business and one that doesn’t; it can benefit your organisation in ways that can add value across the board.

Boost fuel efficiency and sustainability credentials

Every moment your drivers spend behind the wheel out on the road uses fuel and affects your business’s margins. Supplying them with clear, easy-to-follow yet agile real-time delivery routes generated by a responsive Electronic Proof of Delivery (EPOD) system gives them what they need to bypass congestion, avoid accidents and reach each destination as swiftly as possible.

Less fuel used by your fleet means fewer refills, less expense for you and a better carbon footprint for your business. Sustainability has become a major commercial consideration for all kinds of industry, and a commitment to lower your fuel consumption and associated emissions is a great way to reduce your impact on the environment and appeal to customers looking for sustainable services.

Minimise time spent on the road

Fundamentally, the less time it takes your drivers to complete each delivery, the more deliveries they can complete – without overloading their vehicles, of course. But it’s not just higher numbers of satisfied customers and greater job satisfaction for your workforce you can expect as a result; the effects of economical time spent on the road also include longer maintenance lifecycles for your vehicles, and less chance of direct involvement in road-related incidents – an unfortunate but inevitable consequence of a profession spent behind the wheel. And of course, slower wear and tear should never mean your fleet goes unmaintained; a comprehensive EPOD solution should include the capacity for your drivers to carry out and log regular vehicle checks via their mobile devices.

Route planning EPOD software takes a fleet-wide view of your delivery force and automatically plots the logical and time-effective routes possible, and transmits a personal, real-time manifest to each of your drivers on a digital map.

Create a safer field environment for your mobile workforce

We all know the consequences a lapse in concentration can cause when we’re driving. Even a couple of seconds spent looking out for a particular street sign or double-checking hand-written directions can have an unthinkable outcome at the wrong time or place.

With EPOD software, your drivers can rely on live GPS navigation of their routes from your central data hub, designed to display clearly on a range of secure cab-mounted mobile devices. These should be set up to work on a completely handsfree basis, enabling your drivers to get on with the job in hand; delivering goods to your customers in a safe and timely manner. Having a clear route to follow also encourages better driving across your fleet – less speeding to correct wrong turns, less harsh braking and less rapid acceleration – all factors that can make the probability of accidents far more likely.

Manually planning routes for your fleet, whether you have one vehicle or one thousand, is a laborious task. Giving your drivers the time and visibility to navigate the field with ease through a Touchstar EPOD system can help you make invaluable gains in areas you may not have anticipated.