The last mile, the bridge between the last storage location and the final delivery address, is also the most challenging. It is the most expensive, the most challenging and the most polluting part of the supply chain. The last mile alone is responsible for up to 20% of total transportation costs and 30% of CO2 emissions! At the same time, consumers are demanding even faster deliveries, with a wide choice of locations and delivery times.
AntsRoute has listed 5 ways to improve the last mile delivery management, and successfully solve this new challenge.
According to the figures of the ADEME, the French agency for the environment and energy management, 1/4 of the kilometers traveled in the city to transport goods are done empty, while the average loading level of the vehicles is 67%. To optimize these trips and lost capacities, several solutions are available to the logistics managers.
The most accessible sharing solution is the freight exchange. Through these online marketplaces, companies with parcels to ship connect with carriers who want to optimize the trips of vehicles and their available capacities. This allows shippers to carry their goods at a lower cost, while limiting urban traffic jams. As a result of these freight exchanges, some wholesalers now outsource all of their deliveries.
The sharing of deliveries is a solution that does not work for all operators. In some cases, freight exchanges are not able to match supply and demand for transport. Some companies also want to continue to deliver directly, in order to guarantee the quality of the service from one end of the value chain to the other.
The most efficient way to optimize all transports of a company is to use a route planning software. For your pickup and delivery routes, our system calculates the optimal route based on many factors:
Today, there are so many factors to take into account that Operations Managers or Schedulers, even experienced one, can no longer build efficient routes without the help of this software.
By using our geographic optimization software, most of our customers achieve savings of about 20% on the vehicles and trips. Without forgetting the time saved on administrative tasks!
The urban freight transport industry is a highly contradictory one. While the last logistics mile is the most expensive, it generates multiple disappointments for all stakeholders. Time wasted in traffic jams, absent customers, exhausted drivers, late drivers, drivers who never show up, etc.
Therefore, to optimize last mile delivery while improving customer satisfaction, initiatives are multiplying on the different levels.
The online sellers, who account for 80% of home deliveries, are working to encourage pick-ups at drop-off point or partner retailers. Even more economical for carriers, the grouping of deliveries in a relay point reduces the number of stops to 15 on average, compared to about 50 in the case of home delivery.
In the same way, multinational logistics and distribution companies are joining forces to deploy automatic lockers, accessible during very extended time slots. Amazon’s famous lockers are now visible in our urban areas, while La Poste is expanding the Pickup secure locker system.
In addition to expanding delivery locations, some logistics companies are making home deliveries in the evening or on the weekends. In this way, carriers can avoid the problem of traffic jams while improving the satisfaction level of consumers. Delivening, who are one of our customers, offers home delivery of large parcels in Paris in the evening or on weekends.
To deal with climate change, the development of eco-driving is an interesting approach but remaining insufficient. Consumers are also asking transporters to “green” their deliveries, while politicians are increasing the number of regulatory constraints for access to town centers.
In urban areas, freight vehicles account for 30% of road space. Thus, many cities such as Paris, Lyon, Bordeaux or Strasbourg have taken measures to encourage “green” urban delivery. In Strasbourg, for example, Crit’Air 4 vehicles have been banned from the center since the fall of 2019. For other thermal vehicles, deliveries are only allowed from 6 am to 10 am. Those vehicles known as “clean”, such as electric or NGV cars, benefit from an additional hour of delivery time.
To meet these new requirements, companies are progressively renewing their fleets and switching to more ecological methods of transport such as hybrid cars, three-wheelers, electric bicycles and even drones!
To improve logistics performance in the last mile, optimizing information exchanges with the end customer is another very interesting way. A failed delivery is very expensive for the company. The re-delivery of the parcel or its possible handing over to neighbors significantly increases the time, and therefore the cost of the delivery. But a failed communication or a missed appointment generates above all an enormous loss of profit.
The IFOP (Institut français d’opinion publique), an international polling and market research firm, carried out a survey for Star Service which helps us to better measure the importance of effective communication and tracking:
Thanks to our route management software, you can monitor and analyze many performance indicators related to customer satisfaction:
You can also send automated notifications to your customers at each stage, and invite them to evaluate the quality of the service as soon as the delivery is completed.
To optimize your routes with AntsRoute, simply create a free 7-day trial account, without any credit card number or commitment!