The most important information about a transport is about the recipient: At what address should the shipment be dropped off? Does the driver need to call ahead? How does the shipment have to be unloaded? If delivery drivers don’t know the answers to these questions, the delivery attempt may fail. Fortunately, mobile apps can pave the way to a successful delivery.
The more information a freight forwarder has about the person receiving a shipment and the conditions at the delivery location, the faster and more reliable the delivery can be. For that reason, it always helps to share the following information with everyone involved in the transport process:
- Delivery address
- Access to the building
- Separate sign-in point (if required)
- Requirements for signing in at the site (vehicle equipment, driver certifications, etc.)
- Opening hours
- Unloading conditions (dock, side unloading, lorry-mounted forklift required, etc.)
- What floor the delivery point is on, if applicable
Entering and sharing this information with dispatchers and drivers helps set the stage for a successful delivery.
Entering and sharing recipient information
Anyone who plans transports needs to be aware, when accepting the order, what information will be needed to carry out the delivery. Once collected, the information needs to be systematically entered in an order management system and shared with delivery staff. It helps to equip drivers with mobile devices that contain an app for receiving this information. If a mobile workflow management solution is implemented, freight forwarders can make sure that drivers see all important information before leaving for a delivery run. That way, drivers can be confident that they have all the equipment that the delivery requires – such as a lorry-mounted forklift for unloading a shipment from the side of the lorry at a construction site. The information is helpful for planning the delivery itself, too: All articles destined for this unloading point can be consolidated into a single transport run. If this information is not collected, a critical opportunity for optimisation will have been wasted.
Well-informed where it counts
Standing times and waiting times are the biggest margin destroyers on transport runs. To minimise them, drivers have to move quickly and confidently to their destination. They need to know the unloading point’s opening hours so as to minimise time spent off the road. If there are delays, drivers can coordinate with customers more easily if contact details such as phone numbers can be dialled straight from the app. Also, the more drivers know about the site sign-in requirements, the faster they can drive to the unloading dock. The best option is to give precise instructions in the mobile app. On sprawling sites, for example, it may be useful to provide off-road navigation that guides drivers to the unloading point with geocoordinates. Drivers can speed up unloading times further if they know exactly how and when to use necessary special equipment. When deliveries are made under a shipment release authorisation, drivers can wrap things up faster if they immediately see where to place the package safely.
Know more, deliver faster
Ignorance slows down deliveries and creates room for mistakes: That sums up the disadvantages of delivering items without having precise recipient information. To put it another way, if exact information is collected about the unloading point and then entered and provided in an app for drivers to use, workflows will speed up and process quality will improve. And those are two benefits that will play a big role in increasing margins.