Routing has been in our DNA for years now. WorkWave has been building routes for our users in different products ever since it acquired Viamente Route Planner in 2012. We've learned a lot of lessons about what works and what doesn't. My own experience has brought me in touch with so many talented, intelligent, and wonderful business owners and route planners that it is hard to quantify.
We express these lessons and experience differently according to industry. Our pest control companies use PestPac RouteOp. Our lawn, landscape, and cleaning companies use WorkWave Service RouteOp. To our users in the transportation and logistics industries (food delivery, couriers, eCommerce, retail, and too many more to mention) they know this as WorkWave Route Manager (my personal favorite, of course).
All of their needs are different, but we see a common objection from the drivers, dispatchers, and office managers: route optimization replaces me, so why would I want it? After all, a business owner wants to see costs cut and savings increased, the person planning the route wants to keep their job.
The answer to this objection, with no doubt in my mind, is absolutely not. You can not be replaced. You are all far too good at what you do for an algorithm in a program to replace you.
Our routing programs can calculate thousands of routes and possibilities in seconds. They consider factors that affect your customers, build around them faster than any human can, and save your business hours of time (and money).
But that's not enough.
Our experience tells us that our programs can never know everything that you put into a plan. And - trust me - you can give our programs a lot of information to make decisions. Only you can decide what makes your customers and coworkers happy. Someone still needs to be there make sure things run smoothly with the employees running their routes and the customers they are visiting. Someone needs to be able to make last minute decisions and push them out - you can't trust a computer program to make a judgement call like that.
A program just knows "yes" or "no" - you know "but...".
So why have a route builder if you still need to safeguard the routes? Because you no longer have to baby your routes and agonize over decisions. Let the computer do 90% of the math and make the tedious decisions that add up to increased profits and more time in your day.
Take the hours a route builder saves you and streamline your customer service model. Answer the phones or make more calls so you can gain new business. Use the plan that's been built for you as a base. Problems and changes that come up for you throughout the day won't be as much of a challenge - you have the bigger picture figured out already.
This street, that street; this customer now or the other customer later - no one wants to sit and spend time worrying about that. You have other, more important things to do with your company's time.
You can't be replaced...but you can be assisted. Take this as a chance to focus on the more human things in the course of your day: keeping current business, gaining new business, and retaining your drivers.