How Does Mobile Proof of Delivery Work?

| Post, Parcel & Express

worker scanning boxes

Proof of delivery (PoD) is an essential process for any logistics business. It verifies that customers receive the parcels they order. More importantly, this process prevents potential consumer disputes while meeting the growing need for delivery transparency.

In 2021, a total of 159 billion parcels were delivered worldwide. And worldwide online sales are set to grow to a staggering 8.1 trillion by 2026 according to Statista. As the delivery market expands, more and more customers are demanding detailed information on when and how their deliveries are completed.

But despite its importance, still many logistics companies view PoD as an expensive, unmanageable necessity. Fortunately, with the right tools, automated processes, and access to real-time data, proof of delivery can be agile, cost-effective and convenient for all parties.

Mobile proof of delivery is changing the way logistics organizations do delivery verification. By using handheld devices, delivery drivers can capture proof of delivery digitally, eliminating paperwork, mitigating human errors and increasing worker productivity.

However, not all mobile PoD solutions are equal. Choosing the right one needs careful consideration.

Here we give you a rundown on how mobile proof of delivery works — and what to look out for in a technology solution.

A recap of mobile proof of delivery

There are three primary ways to capture proof of delivery digitally, and each approach involves a different process. Here’s a brief explanation of each:

  • Paper delivery note scanning: Delivery drivers carry and collect paper delivery notes (listing the description and quantity of goods delivered, as well as the buyer’s signature). These notes are processed at the end of each workday when drivers return.
  • Traditional handheld scanners: Delivery drivers are trained on and equipped with dedicated mobile barcode scanners. These handheld devices are used to capture electronic signatures and scan parcel barcodes for proof of delivery.
  • Smart devices enabled with smart data capture: Delivery drivers use modern smart devices (such as smartphones or tablets) and proof of delivery apps powered with smart data capture. These mobile devices quickly capture customer signatures, scan parcel barcodes or IDs for proof of delivery.

Finding the right mobile proof of delivery solution

Scanning paper delivery notes is the most straightforward approach on this list. However, it doesn’t address one of the core issues of conventional PoD capture: tedious paperwork clogging up delivery operations.

That’s why many leading logistics companies choose to invest in mobile barcode scanners for PoD. And while dedicated handheld scanners support an efficient workflow for delivery drivers, they’re very expensive to buy and maintain.

High-quality barcode scanners usually range from around 500 to 3,000 dollars per unit, and that doesn’t include the backend system required to operate them. It’s fair to say dedicated scanners tend to last several years before breaking down, but that’s a small consolation considering the setup and running costs.

So, that leaves smart devices enabled with smart data capture for mobile proof of delivery.
Even the most basic modern smart devices have powerful image capture capabilities. Smartphones and tablets enabled with smart data capture-powered apps transforms them into enterprise-grade barcode scanners that instantaneously capture proof of delivery.

The benefits of smart devices for mobile proof of delivery

Unlike traditional mobile barcode scanners, smart devices are intuitive and cost-effective.

They are also familiar to delivery drivers as most use them in their daily lives. Faster and smoother adoption is therefore beneficial. In fact, logistics companies leveraging smart devices as mobile PoD tools adopt a bring your own device (BYOD) policy, allowing delivery drivers to use their own smartphones to complete proof of delivery tasks.

Additional benefits of smart devices include:

  • Scalability: Are easily deployed to scale capacity fast while remaining cost efficient.
    Employee satisfaction: Increased worker productivity and faster deliveries.
  • Flexibility: Like a Swiss army knife, one device is a cost-effective multi-tool.
  • Versatility: Easily adopt new innovations like AR guidance without complex workarounds due to long tech cycles.

Smart devices can deliver the same scanning capabilities of dedicated scanners at a fraction of the cost and are much cheaper to replace compared to dedicated devices. Sven Poppelman, CTO of Farmdrop, a UK-based grocery and fresh food delivery company that uses the Scandit solution for its mobile proof of delivery processes, said, “the smartphone is so inexpensive that it’s effectively free to replace if the driver loses or breaks it.”

And the latest ruggedized smartphones can handle heavy usage or tough conditions just as effectively as bulky scanners, so breakage isn’t a concern.

Mobile proof of delivery is one key task. But a smart device enabled with smart data capture also gives delivery drivers a single multi-functional tool, which enables them to schedule the most efficient delivery routes, track packages and quickly find parcels, thereby lending speed and simplicity to the proof of delivery process. No paperwork, no complex device switching for different tasks — just fast and reliable results.

Scandit’s mobile proof of delivery solution

The Scandit Mobile Proof of Delivery Solution consolidates the dedicated devices delivery drivers use to manage their deliveries into a single mobile app that’s accessible from any smart device.

Our leading-edge smart data capture technology makes it easy for delivery drivers to capture PoD and missing documents or damaged labels through text recognition on modern smart devices.

This solution also includes streamlined workflows that integrate with existing delivery systems effortlessly, mitigating paperwork and errors while bolstering workforce productivity.

In short, our solution takes the stress out of PoD operations, reduces labor costs and optimizes workflows.

Make mobile PoD effortless with Scandit

If you’d like to learn more about how Scandit technology can refine your proof of delivery processes, then be sure to reach out to us today. You can also connect with us for more information on proof of delivery apps, the capabilities of modern smart devices, and mobile proof of delivery software in general. We can’t wait to hear from you.