Many business owners believe that they don’t need a route scheduling software because their routes don’t often change. This is because they have the same drivers visit the same routes over and over.
So, they prefer to go with planning routes with pen and paper.
But… is it the right approach?
Your routes do change, even if you think they don’t.
Moreover, with pen and paper, you’ll never know which are the 100% accurate and best routes. So, your drivers will always follow the same routes, no matter whether they’re inefficient.
It’s not just about routes. Here are several other reasons why you need to amend your route planning strategy and how routing optimization software can help you.
#1 Your Drivers Won’t Stay With You Forever
How many drivers have left your organization since it was founded?
Well… it does not matter whether the figure is significant or negligible. You can’t guarantee that an employee will work with you forever.
This is even more true if you’re in an industry where the drivers are under high pressure. Such industries would include food delivery where drivers are always under stringent delivery turnaround time.
A driver following the same route might know every nitty-gritty detail about it. But, what if that driver suddenly leaves your company?
However, this is no longer a problem with vehicle route planning software. Such software automatically plans your routes by doing all the complex calculations for you. It then provides you with a 100% optimized route with accurate driving directions from home to customers within a minute.
So, you never have to depend on any drivers. It thus won’t matter if an old and experienced driver leaves or takes a long leave of absence. And you never again have to worry about route optimization, vehicle route problem, and the traveling salesman problem.
#2 It Takes a Lot of Time and Effort to Train New Drivers
When you hire new drivers, you need to impart adequate training to ensure that they exceed your expectations.
But, this won’t happen in a day. Training is not a one-time thing, but rather a continuous process.
Now consider how much time, effort, and money you need to shell out to train new drivers.
And, even after doing all this, you still can’t be sure whether the new drivers will perform as desired. In fact, you may need to invest 10-20% of a driver’s compensation in training over the next two to three years.
Route optimization software can help here as well. It is extremely easy to learn and operate. And, it may require only a couple of days to start using it fully.
Also, you may not even need to learn how to use the tool on your own. A couple of providers offer dedicated training for you.
For example, Route4Me has a dedicated team of onboarding specialists. They walk you through every part of the software that helps you plan routes efficiently.
Read the following article for an overview of Route4Me’s onboarding process.
#3 You Don’t Know What Your Drivers are Doing on the Road
You might plan a well-optimized route, but how do you know if your drivers follow it properly?
When planning routes manually, you will never know what your drivers actually do on the road.
For example, they might take prolonged lunch breaks or goof off on the clock.
This could lead to delays in deliveries and ultimately cause customer disappointment.
They may also make personal visits that could jeopardize your business.
For example, as they make a personal visit during working hours, they could violate road laws. But, your business will still be held responsible and penalized, even if you have no hand in it.
Do you think that will be good for your business?
So, you need a tracking tool that can help you overcome such issues. This is where a fleet route planning software could be useful as it offers a GPS tracking feature.
By using it, you can:
- Monitor your driver’s activities,
- Analyze and improve their productivity,
- Increase security, and more.
Read the following article to learn more about how GPS tracking could help you.
#4 Both Your Customers and Drivers Can Scam You Out of Your Money
Even if you have not been scammed thus far, doesn’t mean it won’t happen to you in the future.
A driver might do something illegal, such as taking a package for themselves. And, it would be difficult to identify, especially if you have a large number of packages to deliver.
Also, customers might claim that their package wasn’t delivered. They may then demand to be reimbursed or sent another free item.
On the one hand, you can’t argue with them. They are your customers and it could damage your reputation. But, on the other hand, you can’t suffer such losses either.
When you plan routes manually, you can’t combat either problem and protect yourself. However, routing software is a savior here as well.
Such software offers an eSignature capturing feature. This requires a customer to sign on the driver’s smartphone screen. They can use their finger or a stylus pain. That’s it!
In this way, your drivers can’t fool you as they have to collect the signatures. Also, it is centralized and you can thus access the signatures from your system directly.
Moreover, the customers can’t claim a delivery wasn’t made. You’ll have documented proof that the delivery was made on time. You can even capture the location, date, and time that the signature was captured.
Read the following article to learn more about several other benefits of eSignature capturing.
So, have you explored any route scheduling software? Do you have any questions? Please feel free to leave your comments below, we’d love to hear from you.