Below is an article republished with permission from our partner, Milkman Technologies.
Retailers looking for a one-fits-all solution or Carriers contemplating the expansion of their services should consider 4 factors when looking for their last-mile perfect fit:
- Good communication is no more an option, it’s an imperative. Third parties should offer continuity with the Brand’s experience up to the customer’s doorstep and provide real-time tracking of orders through an interactive interface. Interactive means that customers mustn’t feel helpless if a problem occurs or their needs change: they have to know what to do or be able to reach someone in charge of delivery right away. Chatbots and vague customer-service answers are a thing of the past.
- One platform, many options. Their provider must be able to offer the highest degree of control from warehouse management to driver’s and customer’s experience. The more systems’ domains you cross, the more open you will be to error and miscommunication.
- Data has to feed itself and automatically smarten operations. Things move too fast for data to be collected and manually processed into operative instructions. Street-level experience is too often lost because there’s no unified interface where operators can upload their perspective. A reliable platform auto-collects data and also makes it easy to feed it from the outside. Algorithms then use predictive analysis to optimize operations not only for the present but for the future too.
- Gives the power to shape customer demand. By analyzing last-mile costs, available capacity and existing/projected demand and pairing them with a dynamic slots capability, the platform should offer an optimal trade-off between customer experience and delivery cost. The Carrier saves on miles and fleet/mobile resource saturation and customers are not bound to fixed time slots that may prevent them to choose cheaper wider slots or costlier narrow ones.
Some Transportation Management Systems for the last mile focus on optimization, some on the kind of speed tailored for on-demand deliveries, others are routing engines in disguise. Retailers and Carriers should be wary and diligently evaluate their needs before making such an important choice. Their success may depend on it.
See this link for the full article: https://www.linkedin.com/pulse/4-essential-factors-consider-before-choosing-last-mile-/?trackingId=xCtwZxN%2BXziQDk6AIkEWcQ%3D%3D