The busiest delivery period for Post, Parcel and Express (PPE) businesses is here.
Consumer expenditure during the peak Black Friday shopping period is expected to reach £6.25 billion.
The surge in demand results in huge volumes of orders that need to be fulfilled and delivered within ever-tightening time frames – anything from 5 days to next day or even same-day delivery.
Scaling capacity, onboarding new drivers, maintaining efficiency, and minimizing costs. These are just some of the mountain of operational challenges PPE businesses face in readiness for seasonal spikes.
As Black Friday deals loom, this blog explores four ways logistics businesses can tackle the planned or even unplanned delivery peaks by deploying high-performance smart data capture on smartphones within their last mile delivery operations.
Squeeze more out of existing delivery capacity
Last mile delivery workflows are central to the logistics value chain. Any delay, error or unscheduled downtime brings additional costs and adversely impacts customer satisfaction.
Integrating Scandit’s barcode scanning technology into smartphone delivery apps is a simple way to help employees efficiently tackle ever-growing volumes of deliveries.
It allows them to use a single device for their multiple delivery tasks: scanning, communicating, routing and navigating.
Scandit technology assures performance on any device, in any conditions. It enables scanning of torn or damaged barcodes, from a distance to avoid bending, and in low light conditions, like inside the back of the delivery van, in a dark depot, or at the doorstep.
Delivery processes are automated and streamlined with smartphone scanning, which reduces the time it takes drivers to do tasks like loading or unloading the van with the ability to scan multiple packages simultaneously with Scandit MatrixScan.
With guaranteed scanning success, PPE businesses have full package visibility from the depot to the doorstep with every scan tracking progress, ensuring resources are fully utilized and customer expectations are set and met.
Learn more about how smartphone scanning increases profitability in the last mile in this infographic.
Scale and flex operations with ease using BYOD
Peak seasons like Black Friday require businesses to rapidly scale up in preparation to meet the upsurge in demand. At the same time, they want to scale up or down without unnecessary expenditure.
A scanning-enabled mobile app helps with costs as seasonal workers can use their own smartphones, so no need to provide devices or hardware scanners. Delivery companies can easily tap into the gig economy, alleviating their recruitment challenges, as well as helping them to scale up quickly with minimal costs. Download the app and off they go.
Even where a company reimburses employees using their own devices, it doesn’t have the costs of procuring a stock of devices, nor the expense of maintaining them. And Scandit’s Barcode Scanner SDK brings enterprise-grade scanning performance to over 20,000 device models – so no matter what device the contractor has, scan speed and accuracy is assured.
When compared with using dedicated scanning hardware, a delivery app helps delivery companies to scale more quickly and at a lower cost. For example, read how Shipt scaled capacity at speed using Scandit technology and a BYOD strategy to meet 3x increased demand for grocery delivery services.
Augment onboarding with innovative technology
Onboarding lots of new or temporary staff is an enduring challenge when it comes to scaling in preparation for the Black Friday peak.
Experienced employees deliver predictable levels of performance, which helps delivery companies to understand how closely their capacity will meet the forecast demands.
However, new staff are less effective, and their productivity is more variable. Any approach that helps to onboard and upskill them more quickly is therefore especially valuable.
It’s here that augmented reality (AR) is proving successful. Deploying Scandit MatrixScan AR technology within a delivery app helps to onboard new drivers by overlaying easy to follow instructions, such as real-time information showing changing delivery instructions or highlighting the next package for delivery. The AR-overlays assists with training, ensuring inexperienced and temporary employees are soon up to speed.
The technology also reduces last mile process inefficiencies. For example, a van can be more rapidly loaded by scanning multiple packages at once and the AR overlays help display the delivery zones to enable any driver to quickly sort them all into the optimal delivery order.
Watch how it’s transforming last mile delivery workflows:
Reduce last mile delivery costs with PUDO
Using pick-up and drop-off (PUDO) locations can completely do away with last mile delivery costs.
PUDO offers customers greater choice and a more convenient delivery option. More importantly, it reduces the strain on the costly last mile operation, helping limited resources to stretch further.
Both BYOD and corporate-owned personally enabled (COPE) smart devices (where a business-owned smartphone is deployed to drivers) that incorporate scanning and AR functionality can also help streamline operations at the PUDO location.
Employee productivity is increased as the devices accelerate processes like receiving, searching, providing proof of delivery, and returning parcels through reverse logistics. Scanning is quick and reliable, even when scanning in poor lighting or at a safe distance or angles.
Employing AR technology along with multi-scanning functionality makes for even greater efficiency, so employees can scan all the parcels on a shelf to find items more quickly. Minimal training is required, and the AR overlays provide real-time instructions that prevent costly mistakes.