Route planning is one of the most valuable tools in a fleet manager’s toolbox, but it has to be used properly. You may be confident that you’re using your fleet route planning software to its fullest potential, but there are several moving pieces at play, and if you’re missing just one, you may be at a disadvantage. Route optimization gets your drivers to their destinations in the most efficient way possible. This means using the least fuel and the optimal number of vehicles. But it also improves driver schedules, available hours, and total stops. You can take several steps to ensure you get all these advantages from your fleet route planning software.
No. 1: Optimize Vehicle Capacity, Utilization, and Loading
Of course, your goal is to maximize the revenue you earn with your route optimization software. This means optimizing how you use your vehicles. You can do so by first determining how you’re spending your time. Focus on the time you’re spending on:
- The road
- Idle time
- Pre-loading and awaiting departure time
- Loading and unloading time
- Maintenance and repair time
- Delayed delivery time
Then, you can take these elements and make your changes based on them. Figure out how much storage space you have available for each vehicle in your fleet so you can optimize vehicle capacity, and make sure you load them so that you can unload them in a timely and efficient manner.
No. 2: Monitor Drivers’ Availability and Requirements by Location
As a dispatcher, you know that accurate scheduling is critical to efficiency. Knowing which drivers are available when can help you better manage your drivers’ time. Plan and allocate tasks to drivers and make adjustments with ease. For example, you can switch routes whenever needed or re-optimize delivery schedules when orders change. You can streamline deliveries during busy hours based on drivers’ availability.
No. 3: Minimize Mis-deliveries and Re-deliveries
You never want to have to redeliver an item or have it returned, wasting your time. This invariably means more money and effort spent than necessary. Route optimization can help mitigate this issue. Drivers have specific driving directions and can send an ETA to their customers, so they will receive an ETA of the shipments’ arrival. Drivers can complete electronic proof of delivery options with photos and e-signatures to prove successful deliveries.
No. 4: Maintain Consistent Customer Communication
Communication is key in any business, but in deliveries, it is crucial. However, so many companies find it challenging. Luckily, automation can help. Your system can send alerts to the customer’s contact information (email or text message) so that customers don’t have to constantly reach out to support for help. Route optimization ensures that delivery ETAs are always accurate, ensuring customer satisfaction consistently.
No. 5: Automate Importing Data
Doing routine tasks manually is a bit silly in this day and age. Why bother when automation is an option? Route optimization software can import your information into your fleet management software and even generate reports to help you better understand your data and make better-informed decisions for your business.
No. 6: Avoid Delays
One of the greatest advantages of route optimization software is that you can avoid the everyday delays that slow fleets down. Delays due to bad weather, traffic jams, major blockages, detours, construction, and accidents are all avoidable with route optimization software. It predicts these problems ahead of time and recalculates your route, so you avoid them entirely.
Get the Best Route Optimization Software
If you aren’t already using route optimization software, you may be losing money. Catch up before 2022 and install route optimization software today. You can try Azuga’s top-of-the-line software using a free demo online. You’re sure to be impressed with what you can do.