Category: Vehicle Loading & Scheduling
- 3 Simple Ways to Optimise Logistics Systems in Your Business
- 5 Key Benefits of Delivery Management Software
3 Simple Ways to Optimise Logistics Systems in Your Business
Can you juggle? How many balls can you keep in the air at one time? Would you say three or four? How about five?
If your day job involves supply chain management, you might be more talented than you think.
Logistics takes coordination and you have a lot of figurative balls up in the air all at once. So, how can you improve the daily juggling act of your business?
Let’s see how your organisation can benefit from optimising your logistics systems.
How Do You Optimise Logistics?
Here are three simple ways to optimise logistics systems in your business.
Automation means that you can plan further ahead. Logistics software provides more accurate calculations which takes some of the guesswork out of future requirements. It also reduces judgement errors.
Why waste valuable time on manually doing tasks when you can get them automated instead? Smart software tools can really help you here.
It’s often a good idea to outsource work that your company can’t perform in-house. Or, at least, the busy work that doesn’t need to be done in-house. Outsourcing may seem like an unnecessary expense, but it pays in the long run.
For example, if you have an online shop, you might consider outsourcing your product packaging. This type of delegation will give you more time to spend on your business without having to learn the ins and outs of another speciality. As a result, you’ll see an increase in sales and business growth.
3. Accurate Predictions
In supply chain management, timing is everything. Timing comes into play when you’re working to get the right materials, in the right quantities to the right people.
So it’s important that you’ve gathered data to base your decisions on. Working off past records will help you predict future patterns and prepare accordingly.
Inventory control is especially important in the retail setting. For example, let’s say you run a bakery, and you sell a variety of pastries on a daily basis. You’d probably sell more during colder weather when people are craving comfort food. So, it’s necessary to understand your customer’s behaviour, what they want, and when they want it.
When your decisions are thus informed you’ll anticipate changes in your logistics requirements and you’ll be better equipped to meet demand. You’ll find your logistics process optimised, providing better customer service.
Vehicle Loading and Scheduling
When it comes to logistics, vehicle loading and scheduling is a whole story on its own. Implementing loading and scheduling software can help you in these areas:
– Managing routes and delivery times
– Coordinating your orders and deliveries better
– Running your fleet more efficiently
– Reconciling your loads and deliveries
Let’s take a closer look at how this all comes together in one useful package with Omni’s Vehicle Loading Feature.
With our logistics management software feature, it’s much easier to manage deliveries. You’re in control from the moment a sales order is generated right up until delivery is made.
Delivery management functionality does the calculations for you. So the system lets you know if the vehicle is overloaded or ready for transportation.
It’s easier to access loading sheets. This helps you see the list of customers you’re delivering to. It’s also a quick way of seeing the stock items that need to be included in the load.
Not only does our software help with distribution, but also with physical vehicle loading in that you can manage the carrying capacity of your vehicles better. It allows you to input vehicle data, such as weight, volume, and carrying capacity which makes it much easier to determine if a vehicle is overloaded.
Once all your orders have been captured as loaded for delivery, the software will generate the relevant invoices. Then, when you have the invoices, your vehicle is ready to be sent out.
Our Vehicle Loading feature simplifies every step of load management. This makes it so much easier to coordinate all the factors. The room for error is much less when one step automatically follows the next.
With our vehicle loading and scheduling solutions, you can even set up customer route profiles. So when it comes time for vehicle loading, you can pull up customer delivery details with the sales orders.
When you set up a particular routing for deliveries, you can also set a delivery sequence. This information will automatically populate onto the trip sheet.
The importance of route optimisation shouldn’t be overlooked. Your customers expect to receive their orders on time, every time. When you let them down, your reputation pays the price.
Don’t Drop the Ball
The logistics process is a fundamental part of the retail industry. This is especially true if your business has anything to do with e-commerce.
What is the cost of disruptions in your supply chain? In 2020, it was reported that 64% of American and European companies lost up to 20% of their revenue, and their brand reputation suffered too. (Source)
So it’s pretty important to make sure that your logistics strategy really works. You don’t want to lose out because of inefficiencies or disruptions. You’ll also need to recognise weak points and prepare for the unexpected as best you can.
Optimising logistics systems isn’t a quick fix and it involves many interrelated business processes. Streamlining your operations might not happen overnight, but that doesn’t mean it’s an impossible task.
Partnering with the right logistics software provider will make the juggling easier to handle. Every business can benefit from Enterprise Resource Planning (ERP) to streamline day to day operations. One of the benefits of our ERP system is that you can seamlessly integrate your logistics process.
What Does Optimisation Mean in Logistics?
Put simply, it means improving the performance of your systems. You take your business challenges and all possible factors into account and then make a plan to develop the most efficient, profitable way forward.
In logistics, you have to manage a variety of supply chain factors from start to finish. You also have to rely on analytics as this data provides critical information that you need to coordinate supply and demand.
We are acutely aware that procurement of enough raw materials at the right time is an important part of logistics. Failing this, we won’t be able to fill manufacturing and distribution requirements. We need to balance many factors so that we can reach the best value for money at the same time as meeting our customer expectations.
Here are some of the factors that make up the logistics management juggling act:
– Placing and completing orders
– Reverse logistics
– Control, forecasting and managing inventory
– Warehouse storing, packing and handling inventory
– Inbound and outbound logistics
– Vehicle scheduling, loading and transport management
– Keeping pace with suppliers
– Customising a software system and gathering important data
– Global logistics
– Vehicle loading and scheduling
Optimising logistics means better planning and execution no matter what industry you’re in.
If you want to please the crowds, your juggling act must be perfect. And it can be.
When you optimise logistics systems your business benefits. You can quickly maximise your operations and build a stellar reputation in your industry. You will experience an increase in your profits when you improve your productivity and daily operations.
It’s Omni’s goal to make sure you never drop the ball. If you’d like more information on a customised solution for your business, contact the team here.
5 Key Benefits of Delivery Management Software
South Africans are a resourceful bunch, and statistics agree.
“Small businesses have, without much fanfare, slowly taken over more of the turnover pie. In 2013, small businesses generated 16% of total turnover in the formal business sector, expanding to 22% in 2019. The contribution of large business waned over the same period, from 75% to 68%” (Source).
Building a business in these tricky economic times is a feat in itself. However, maintaining and growing a business is where the real challenge lies.
One of the hiccups that small businesses face is scaling up from a few deliveries a day to dozens or hundreds a day.
Scheduling drivers and choosing delivery routes is one thing as the load increases. However, add to this trying to somehow keep track of the constant ebb and flow of outgoing items, returns, payments, non-delivery, lost packages and breakages and it’s easy to see why SME owners have migraines.
If there is a simpler and more efficient way of managing deliveries, then it makes sense to look into it, right?
What is Delivery Management Software?
Software for delivery management can be defined as a platform for automating crucial logistical operations, such as dispatching, distributing orders, tracking vehicles, route planning and more.
Not too long ago, delivery management tools consisted of issuing your drivers with a printout of their routes and sending them on their way. Using Google maps and other route planning tools is a huge step up from these archaic methods, and a welcome relief for drivers.
However, there is often still a disconnect between these mobile apps, driver contact, and effective customer communication in last-mile delivery systems for SMEs. What we want is a smooth transition from items leaving the warehouse to secure doorstep delivery with as much accurate communication in between as possible.
Is delivery management software all it’s cracked up to be? What are some of the benefits of investing in these advanced tools for your business?
More Efficient Delivery
When it comes to logistics, time is money – literally.
Manually setting up deliveries and trying to determine the shortest and most efficient routes can be a real headache. Faster deliveries mean that drivers are freed up to fulfil more orders, customers are happier, and your business flourishes.
Imagine being able to enter a sales order into your accounting system and simply let the algorithms do the rest. This includes creating a Trip Sheet that defines the most efficient routes for all drivers. Delivery management software creates a magical flow from purchase to delivery, including accurate order picking, stock management, and the all-important optimised vehicle routes.
Enhanced Driver Management
The more bodies involved in a process, the bigger the margin for error. Nobody wants to be playing Broken Telephone with customer orders at stake.
Therefore, it’s necessary to track and monitor all drivers at all times on real-time platforms that are accurate and user-friendly. A good delivery management system will offer straightforward methods to keep everyone in the loop.
Reduce Costs to Grow Your Business
The most direct route, accurate inventory picking, focused drivers – what more could you want?
Omni Accounting offers an additional module that makes loading and distribution a breeze.
“Vehicles can be created with their load capacities in weight as well as volume within Omni Accounts.
A list of drivers can also be created. When the load is added to a particular vehicle, the system will, through a process of comparing the dimensions and weight of the stock being loaded, to the carrying capacity of the vehicle, warn you in the event that the vehicle becomes overloaded.
At this point, the user will be given the option to either reduce the load or transfer it to another vehicle with a higher load capacity.”
Something at the forefront of every fleet manager’s mind is fuel costs. They can be eye-wateringly pricey, yet are one of the simplest costs to manage. The shortest route from A to B is usually the less expensive one, and this plan is set up automatically to eliminate guesswork and lost drivers.
Who would say no to higher profit margins with less work?
Minimise Wasted Time
In today’s digital world, there is very seldom a reason to perform repetitive manual tasks when there is a piece of software that can do it better, faster, and more accurately than your team can.
Time spent on customer service calls, sales, networking and reworking internal systems is never wasted. And they are not tasks that can be automated as they require the finesse of a personal human touch.
To this, you can add efficiently optimised routes for your drivers, resulting in fewer non-delivery situations, and simple daily reconciliations.
Excellent Customer Experience
We’ve all had the experience of a company sending a message telling us that our order will be delivered between 8 am and 5 pm on Wednesday. It’s frustrating, right? Do you go out to pick up the kids from school? Do you even go to work for the day and risk a disgruntled driver calling to ask you where you are?
Delivery management software removes this customer service killer by reducing the delivery windows and allowing for constant, up-to-date communication. Managing customer expectations is high on the list of priorities of smart businesses that want to reduce client churn and grow their company.
What Is the Best Delivery Management Software?
The best delivery management software for your business should have the capability to reduce fuel and time wastage, keep your customers and staff happy, streamline and speed up deliveries, and keep your drivers on top of their game.
It will also free you up to get involved in the aspects of your business that will help you grow and thrive as a key player in the South African economy.
Do you have questions about this software and how it can work for your business? If so, please feel free to contact our helpful, professional team at your convenience.