4 Ways Mobile Data Capture Supports Transport and Logistics

| Transportation & Logistics

scanning barcode

Transport and logistics (T&L) organizations rely on data capture technologies to track packages and shipments, maintain equipment, and ensure efficient check-ins for passengers. These workflows are traditionally achieved using dedicated barcode scanning devices, which work in tandem with existing enterprise apps to support deliveries, shipping, PUDO and return services, and more. In recent years, IT leaders in the T&L industry have discovered a more flexible, scalable, cost effective solution that actively drives business growth and productivity: mobile data capture for transport and logistics.

Mobile data capture technology brings enterprise-grade scanning capabilities to native and web apps on everyday smart devices, including smartphones, tablets, and even wearables. This technology empowers T&L teams to equip any employee with a powerful mobile scanner for a variety of day-to-day tasks, including product identification, data entry, quality assurance (QA), shipping and fulfillment, and even ordering and tracking.

smartphone scanning barcode

Smart device-based mobile data capture offers wide-spanning benefits for T&L organizations, including the following:

Reduced costs vs. dedicated hardware

Did you know that mobile data capture solutions help T&L organizations reduce capital expenditures and maintenance costs by 3x compared to dedicated scanning devices? Mobile scanners are significantly more cost effective vs. dedicated hardware, reducing TCO (total cost of ownership). These smartphone-based solutions are also familiar and easy for employees to use, making implementation and training simple and fast.

Enhanced tracking processes

The best mobile data capture software offers barcode scanning performance on virtually any smart device that matches or even outperforms hardware scanners, allowing T&L enterprises to improve parcel tracking and delivery workflows. Enterprise-grade scanning software even processes torn, tiny, or poorly lit codes in the most challenging scanning conditions in seconds, bringing greater consistency and reliability to your T&L data capture processes.

Safe, scalable operations

Cost effective and ubiquitous, mobile smart devices can be updated at any time without being pulled out of circulation, unlike traditional scanners. Smartphone-based scanners may also be augmented with robust security features (including data encryption and user management) to protect devices—and safely scale as operational demands increase.

Integrated IT systems

Smart device-based scanners allow your IT department to integrate its mobile data capture solution with existing backend systems. Data can be effectively captured, managed, and shared across your transportation management systems, resource planning systems, and warehouse management systems to coordinate and optimize your T&L workflows.

Mobile data capture use cases for Transport and Logistics

Now that we’ve covered the core benefits of mobile data capture for T&L organizations, let’s review two of its most common and impactful use cases in transportation and logistics:

Pickup & Delivery

Post Parcel Driver Search Find

Mobile barcode scanning apps give T&L last mile delivery staff the ability to track packages throughout delivery and pickup workflows using their own smartphones, eliminating the need for expensive scanning hardware. Employees equipped with a user-friendly mobile scanning app can instantly identify packages at the distribution center, then track them across delivery touchpoints.  When scanning against a delivery manifesto, the ability to use continuous scanning without having to activate the scanner everytime is a plus for efficiency.

Pickup & Dropoff (PUDO) operations are streamlined with mobile data capture. The solution enables real-time parcel tracking to and from any customer touchpoint: gas stations, secure lockers, convenience stores,post offices or branches, and even third-party service providers. T&L enterprises and their partners use mobile device-based barcode scanning to receive, search and find, and complete contact-free proof of delivery wherever customers choose to receive their packages.

Fleet drivers can also leverage mobile data capture tools to load, manage, and sort parcels for seamless deliveries. Solutions like Scandit MatrixScan empower drivers to scan multiple barcodes at once, using augmented reality (AR) feedback to see where each package belongs into their delivery schedule. These insights allow drivers to optimize vehicle loads for each specific route, saving time at every stop. This multi-scan functionality supports more efficient parcel sorting, as well as quick and accurate identification of special parcels, to foster on-time, first-time deliveries.

Shipping & Receiving

multiple scanning with matrixscan

Mobile data capture works alongside existing shipping and receiving software to reduce costs, ship products quickly, and ensure customers receive the correct items exactly when requested. Workers can leverage mobile barcode scanning to keep track of shipments anywhere in the warehouse, capturing all data from shipments in a single scan. Multi-scanning on smartphone-based scanners lets warehouse teams process orders faster and more ergonomically than with traditional hardware, driving more efficient shipping and receiving operations.

With the addition of augmented reality overlays, employees can instantly access important info on received shipments by scanning their barcodes (including customer details and address information) to enable smooth, error-free receiving. Employees can also use their devices to document absent or damaged shipments in real time via shipping and receiving software, making shipment authentication and reporting simpler than ever.

The Scandit solution for Transportation and Logistics

The Scandit solution is fully compatible with existing backend systems, including shipping and receiving software, and can be simply integrated into any new or existing apps with our industry-leading computer vision products.

Contact us today for more information on our innovative mobile data capture solutions—and how they can drive results and digital transformation for your T&L enterprise.