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Five ways to improve last-mile delivery

The anticipation of a package’s arrival is a familiar feeling for many, with tracking pages getting frequent refreshes and customers left in the dark about the exact timing of their deliveries.

Over the past few years, our expectations for swift and smooth deliveries have evolved significantly, driven in part by the COVID-19 pandemic. As these expectations have shifted, the last-mile delivery systems of many retailers are now facing bottlenecks.

Increased delivery demand has presented challenges for companies, resulting in delays, customer dissatisfaction, and higher delivery costs. Roy Moody, CEO of last mile dispatch software provider vWork, emphasized the importance of the last mile in the supply chain process, which accounts for over half of total shipping costs. He noted, “Every added inefficiency in the last mile process drives the cost of deliveries higher, while every added efficiency in the last mile process drives the cost of deliveries down.”

However, transforming the last-mile delivery experience doesn’t necessarily require boundless resources. A few strategic operational changes and the right technology can make a significant difference in this critical phase of the delivery process.

Roy explained, “Retail giants have set high standards for last-mile delivery, pressuring the industry to match or exceed these benchmarks. It’s all about enhancing the customer experience and building brand loyalty. If your service is on par with Amazon’s, the size of your company doesn’t matter.”

Here are five strategies to streamline last-mile delivery operations and enhance the customer experience:

Automate Delivery Route Optimization

Real-time route optimization ensures deliveries take the most efficient paths, reducing travel time and carbon footprint. These complex calculations are impossible to perform manually.

Activate Real-Time 

Tracking and Communication: Transparent communication is essential. Providing real-time tracking and updates allows customers to monitor their deliveries closely and make necessary arrangements.

Centralize Your Data

Organize delivery data in a centralized location to better understand the last-mile delivery process and make adjustments as needed.

Collaborate with Local Delivery Partners

Partner with independent delivery operators to boost delivery capacity during peak periods. Ensure they have the tools needed to meet delivery SLAs and processes.

Integrate Delivery Tech with Other Functions

Connect job scheduling and dispatch with invoicing and accounting to create a seamless end-to-end experience for customers and reduce errors.

These strategies can help businesses optimize their last-mile delivery process, increase efficiency, and deliver an exceptional customer experience.

Founded in New Zealand, vWork is a job scheduling and dispatch software solution with more than 5,000 active users across ten countries.

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