Barcelona, July 5, 2022.- Below we publish analyzes on Artificial Intelligence and Data Analytics in the last mile logistics, published in the RB Webcity magazine:
While the process of last-mile logistics may seem simple on the surface — getting a product from point A to point B — the entire process, overall, is far more involved than that. To serve their clients in an efficient and timely manner, delivery logistics companies must optimize their operations, which involves processing data from many different sources to create the best solution possible.
Delivery logistics companies have powerful artificial intelligence, data analysis tools at their disposal, and part of the innovation in this field has been ensuring that clients can access this data. An analytic dashboard allows clients to understand what is happening with their delivery orders and ensure that their precious business is in the right hands.
The primary way delivery logistics companies use AI and data analytics in last-mile deliveries is to optimize routes. Delivery is all about getting something to its destination on time less than 1 hour, and that requires you to be efficient and quick with your routing logistics. Optimizing a delivery route is about much more than avoiding traffic, as a rush-hour commuter would need, which is why data analysis is necessary for success in the field.
One of the most common issues with popular consumer-facing delivery companies like Doordash and Uber Eats is driver mistakes. When you have a driver picking up multiple orders from multiple sources for various destinations, there is a likelihood that the orders will be mixed up. On the other hand, having multiple orders from one pickup or multiple pickups for one dropoff will result in fewer mistakes. This is the solution that business-sided delivery logistics companies offer.
The success of this type of strategy comes down to deploying the right drivers for the right orders. Proximity is certainly an essential factor in speedy delivery, but there are other factors that must also be considered. For example, if the driver closest to the pickup spot can’t handle the demands of that particular order, it might be best to have another driver deployed for that pickup. Analyzing the available data allows dispatch teams to assign drivers appropriately.
To optimize the dispatch process, delivery logistics companies create profiles of their drivers to help place them with the right orders. Data like their performance metrics can be pivotal in determining whether or not a driver is the best fit for any given project. The performance data of drivers — such as whether they were on time and responsible, or have good reviews and ratings — are also instrumental in determining the pay drivers are to receive.
Having this data makes it much easier when dealing with delivery fulfillment at higher numbers. If your delivery drivers are on time, your clients are happy, which leads to better perception of your business from its customers. Remember that your clients are trusting you with their business; if you do anything to violate this trust, whether it is being late or messing up an order in transit, your company will suffer along with theirs.
It is crucial for the data being held about deliveries to be kept secure. Drivers should only be able to access information about pickups and dropoffs while they are delivering. While a certain level of information is necessary to allow the driver to get from point A to point B efficiently, the need for this information ends once the dropoff has been made. Restricting this information on a “need to know” basis will ensure the security of everyone involved.
One of the ways that delivery logistics companies can help protect and secure information is by integrating their API into an existing e-commerce system. In so doing, delivery logistics companies are changing their role from an intermediary to that of a partner. The company is using data already collected by the client, not collecting it themselves, thereby eliminating the need for more secure collection practices.
Ensuring the security of information is especially important when handling information of a highly-sensitive nature, such as personal, medical data etc. Confidentiality and discretion are paramount in these matters since the information involved in these deliveries can significantly impact the lives and business of the clients.
Finding the best solution in last-mile logistics can be tricky, especially since there is frequently more than one way a challenge can be approached. However, there can only be one “best” solution, and finding that requires analyzing data and looking at the problem from several different angles. The sheer amount of information these companies are working with can be initially overwhelming. Still, having the right tools and security measures in place will result in a smoother operation.