Prior to COVID-19, e-commerce in North America was booming thanks to Amazon. The pandemic has accelerated that and stakeholders within the last-mile delivery space are begging for technological solutions to better optimize the logistics of delivery.
According to a recent report from Armstrong & Associates, COVID-19 drove a 31.8% quarter-over-quarter increase in e-commerce retail sales to the tune of $211.5 billion in Q2 of 2020. E-commerce retail now accounts for 16.1% of all retail sales, Armstrong said in its “Rising Tide: The Rapid Growth of E-Commerce Logistics, 3PL Solutions, Last-Mile Delivery, and the Dominance of Amazon” report.
“The pandemic has brought new challenges and opportunity … for transportation and logistics,” Krishna Vattipalli, CEO of Imaginnovate, said during a demonstration of the Fleet Enable product at the FreightWaves Last Mile Logistics Summit on Thursday. “Last-mile delivery has become more and more critical with people shopping online. It’s just not small items or clothes that are being purchased but furniture and big-box items such as televisions [and] washing machines.”
Saying that last-mile delivery is “the new normal,” Vattipalli went on to explain how Fleet Enable empowers fleets to optimize delivery, get paid quicker and improve customer service for both shippers and end customers.
“Fleet Enable enhances the delivery experience for all the stakeholders, including the shipper, the carrier and the customer, by forecasting their needs, automating the decision-making process and providing appropriate information at each and every step of the delivery process,” he said.
Fleet Enable offers a dashboard that allows users to “automate appointment scheduling” and dispatchers to quickly and efficiently confirm appointments with customers. This is especially important for so-called “white-glove deliveries” of larger and bulky items.
Within the dashboard, users see a number of key points, including number of orders and order status (whether it has been assigned, prepared, dispatched or delivered). Easy-to-find tabs offer the ability to drill deeper into the information, including order management (tracking, new orders) and whether orders have been received or verified for delivery.
Once an order is ready for delivery, the dispatcher can build routes by choosing the orders to be delivered. The system then puts together routing options and will highlight concerns that could impact delivery.
In the demonstration, Vattipalli chose a series of orders, one of which needed to be delivered on the 10th of the month. But in the routing plan, the item could not be delivered until the 12th. Reaching out to the customer allowed the carrier to confirm that a delivery on the 12th was acceptable but it needed to be in the afternoon. Once the dashboard was updated with the new order details, Fleet Enable reran the route through the optimization engine to create a new delivery plan.
Once a route is finalized, the dispatcher uses Fleet Enable to select an available driver who is then sent the route information, including where to pick up the orders and an itemized list of what needs to be picked up. Navigation is included on the driver’s mobile device along with the route plan. Once delivery is made, the driver is able to capture proof of delivery either through a photo or signature.
“We know that one size does not fit all, so our solution is highly customizable,” Vittipalli said. “Fleet Enable allows you to provide better experiences to all your stakeholders — better engagement to your employees, better experience to your customers and better value to your shippers.”
To schedule a demo or learn more about Fleet Enable, email email@example.com.