Operations managers and route planners understand the importance of route planning software.
It’s essential to have a powerful tool that can optimize routes in minutes and free up your time. Without software doing the heavy lifting for you, it’s nearly impossible to get ahead of your day let alone focus on strategy.
It doesn’t matter if you’re a small, medium or enterprise business, you share the same challenges. Managing deliveries and customer’s expectations is demanding and unpredictable. That’s where a route planning software can help you work smarter.
If you want to save time, are looking for buy-in, or are concerned with whether or not you can implement a new process - keep reading. We’ll help answer questions on how small businesses can benefit quickly from route planning software.
Question #1: “I’ve been running my routes like this for years. Am I ready for change?”
Moving your routes to a cloud-based solution will help you modernize. Now what used to take you hours, will only take minutes. In the click of a button, you’ll optimize your day and can move on to other tasks.
Afterall, customers are asking for more from businesses. The top requests include ETA updates, options on delivery time windows, and the ability to place last minute orders - making it impossible to rely on manual methods.
Planning with maps, sticky notes, or Excel sheets won’t cut it anymore. You’ll need to evolve your strategy in order to keep your costs down and stay competitive.
You just need to define your unique business needs and settings. Here are some route characteristics that you can account for:
- Traffic windows like rush hour or seasonality
- Vehicle capacity that’s customized to each vehicle
- Driver availability that saves working hours, PTO, or holidays
- Automatically balance workloads
- Set maximum drive time, idle time, mileage, breaks and working time
- Start/end location for when drivers need to finish the day at a new location
- Time-windows for service or deliveries
Question 2: Will this support my current workflow?
You want to choose a solution that doesn’t disrupt your current processes. This will help ease your team into change and help increase adoption.
Here are some ways Route Manager can work around the way you need it to:
- Mobile Deep Link - Drivers can receive routes within the Route Manager App (eliminating paperwork) and before moving on to their next step, linking it to other applications on your driver's device. For instance, you could create a button that automatically sends your driver to a pre-filled SMS message to send to your customer.
- Drag-and-Drop Orders - Need to adjust the route due to a last minute request? Or maybe you want to add another stop to a driver’s route - you can easily drag-and-drop an order from one vehicle to another without needing to reroute. Plus, any violations that occur (like overtime or missed time-windows) will be highlighted for your review.
- Integrates Easily with Existing Software through APIs - APIs allow different programs to automatically send and receive information from one another. For instance, you can link a Customer Relationship software to Route Manager in order to automatically upload visits you need to make in a certain date range.
- Easy Data Uploads - Upload your route file (Excel/.CSV) and have maximum flexibility over what you upload from your manual records or your CRM system. Custom field mapping let’s you tell us what your data represents.For instance, you can designate fields for “driver notes”, “customer name”, “invoice number” or any data point.
Question 3: I’m really busy. How much time do I need to get started?
Route Manager is not only intuitive and easy to learn, but our support team will schedule time with you to get up and running when it’s convenient to you. Ongoing support, training, and onboarding are free for all customers!
But, take a step back and think about the time savings you’ll gain once you get started with a solution. Check out our ROI calculator to see what you can expect to put back in your pocket.
Having access to route planning software can help you achieve:
- 30% increase in operational efficiency
- 20% increase in orders served (in same 8 hour day)
- 10-15% reduction in fuel consumption and costs