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How to Plan a Delivery Route Effectively

How to Plan a Delivery Route Effectively

There are a lot of different factors to consider when planning an effective delivery route. Thankfully, the more you know, the easier route planning becomes. Improving your route planning will benefit you, your drivers, and your customers.

This guide will go over how to plan the best delivery routes possible and what tools you'll need to do the job.

What Is Delivery Route Planning?

Delivery route planning is an integral part of the logistics process. It involves taking all your orders and distributing them among your drivers so that your routes are as efficient as possible. In the following section, we'll go over three important factors to remember when planning routes.

3 Keys for Efficient Delivery Route Planning

Route Optimization

Optimizing driving distance and fuel consumption is key to lowering final mile delivery costs. Understanding what factors impact a route's efficiency, such as distance and fuel consumption, is essential to effective route optimization.

Typically, route efficiency is affected by the following:

  • Number of stops scheduled for your driver
  • Distance between each stop
  • Cost per mile

Optimizing your routes effectively requires planning beyond simply calculating the shortest distance between two stops, which is why great route planners also take into account the following factors:

  • Area of delivery
  • Geography
  • Traffic conditions and road closures
  • Collection and delivery locations
  • Driver availability
  • Vehicle availability and capacity
  • Driver home locations

Planning a delivery route with multiple stops while strategically accounting for the above factors is known as route optimization. The right strategy helps reduce your drivers' total distance and time spent on the road. As a result of these savings, you can increase your company's overall delivery capacity.

Time Windows

Not every order is the same, and neither is every customer. Deliveries often have specific time frames due to factors such as signature requirements or hours of operation. Arriving too early or too late at a customer's location can result in expensive waiting times, driver idling, and sometimes additional trips, which is why time windows are necessary.

Once you have time windows for each delivery, you can consider other route optimization requirements. For example, if your client has paid for same-day delivery, include that detail in your route plan to avoid a late delivery or an additional trip the next day. It's also important to consider other elements, such as stop duration, as they can impact your ability to meet other delivery time windows.

Factoring in stop duration and delivery time windows into your route optimization strategy ensures that you arrive at locations right on time. Delivery route planning software allows you to account for all of the above during route optimization.

Location Management

To make on-demand assignments, dispatchers must know which drivers are currently clocked in, where they are located, and what assignments they have queued up. Immediate access to all driver data empowers your dispatcher to make the best assignment decisions.

It's also important to factor in start and endpoints to your routes. For instance, if you have many pick-up locations, choosing a delivery driver closest to a route's starting point is essential. In addition, if you want to minimize driving after the final delivery, you can optimize routes to end near your home base. Better optimized start and endpoints save your drivers’ time and ultimately lower delivery costs.

Final Thoughts

With the right tools, you can plan delivery routes effectively. OnTime 360 gives you all the features you need, including route optimization with time windows, real-time updates, location management, and more. Contact our sales team directly or book a live demo to try the OnTime delivery software.

What Is Final Mile Delivery? A Courier's Guide

Today's customers expect fast and reliable shipping. To meet these expectations, courier and delivery providers need to continually revisit their final mile delivery strategy. In this article, we'll go over some common features of final mile delivery and provide a guide to how you can overcome challenges.

What Is Final Mile Delivery?

Final mile delivery is the last step of the delivery process when a parcel is moved from a transportation hub to its final destination. Although it's the most time-consuming and costly step in the delivery process, it's also one of the most important. As consumer demand for speedy final-mile shipping rises, so does the importance of delivering the packages as affordably, quickly, and accurately as possible.

What Types of Businesses Need Final Mile Delivery

Final mile delivery is relevant for any business that delivers products directly to its consumers.

Some of these businesses include:

  • Third-party logistics companies
  • Direct-to-consumer retail companies
  • Pharmacies
  • Food delivery companies
  • Big-box stores
  • Ecommerce businesses

As a delivery company, you can partner with any of these businesses to provide them with final mile services.

The Cost of Final Mile Delivery

As "free shipping" continues to become more and more prevalent, customers are less willing to pay a delivery fee, forcing your clients to make difficult decisions. In order to stay competitive in this industry, final mile delivery companies need to keep delivery costs as low as possible.

Final mile delivery costs can be broken down into three main categories:

  • Dispatching – Route optimization, driver visibility, and delivery schedules can all impact the cost of the final mile delivery.
  • Delivery – Some factors that impact costs during delivery include the time frame, size of orders, delivery scope, and vehicle mileage.
  • Technology – This can include the costs of implementing software, smart tracking technology, up-to-date hardware, and more.

Optimizing all three of these common final mile delivery costs is key to industry success. In the following section, we'll discuss some of the common challenges that final mile delivery providers face as well as some solutions.

Final Mile: Problems and Solutions

Delivering On Time Every Time

Final mile delivery involves carrying many small packages to unique destinations. The more stops your drivers make, the more complicated your routes and overall logistics become. The increasing demand for same-day delivery adds another level of difficulty. According to a study conducted by Invesp Conversion Rate Optimization, more than half of online shoppers aged 18-34 expect same-day delivery, and over 60 percent of them say they'd pay more to have their packages delivered on the same day. Meeting these expectations is a huge challenge for final mile couriers.

One of the best tools available for keeping up with this increasing demand is route optimization software. Route optimization software considers delivery time windows, geography, and other factors when creating routes. This leads to less time on the road, saving personnel, vehicle maintenance, and fuel expenses. Businesses can see a 20% to 40% reduction in fuel costs and drive time from route optimization. Route optimization also helps to increase delivery capacity. The more time you save with optimized routes, the more time your drivers have to add new stops to their routes.

Going the extra mile

Good customer service is an important part of a successful final mile delivery strategy. There are a few things you can do to improve your customer experience, including notifications, integrations, and proof of delivery.

According to one study, about 5 to 10 percent of all final mile deliveries fail. This has a significant negative impact on your customer experience. As a final mile delivery provider, it's important to minimize failed deliveries as much as possible.

One way to avoid failed deliveries is to ensure that your customers stay informed on their order status, such as when an order is received, in transit, or delivered. With the right software, you can keep your customers up-to-date with automatic notifications. Not only does this make failed deliveries less likely, but best of all, it increases customer loyalty and satisfaction.

Another great way to improve the customer experience is through software integration. One of the most common ways to integrate is through an application programming interface (API). With an API solution, you can share documents, automatically send updates, and more. Advertising your ability to integrate with other systems can also help you to win new business.

High-quality proof of delivery (POD) also improves customer satisfaction. POD confirms the time, condition, and exact recipient of a delivery. This gives customers peace of mind knowing they received their package on time.

There are a few different POD methods—each with its own strengths and weaknesses. Signature proof-of-delivery is the original POD and one of the easiest to implement, photo proof-of-delivery has increased in popularity in the past few years, and barcode scanning is one of the quickest and simplest ways to confirm that the correct parcel has been delivered. 

Equip your Drivers

Because of increased demand for final mile delivery, keeping a consistent driver base is difficult. Improving driver experience can go a long way towards keeping your drivers loyal. One of the best ways of doing that is by making their jobs easier using smart technology. Many drivers carry around multiple items, including barcode scanners, pricing sheets, order lists, GPS devices, and phones. With the right mobile app, a smartphone can accomplish the function of all these items:

  • GPS tracking – GPS trackers can be an expensive addition to your driver's toolbox. On top of that, it can be difficult to integrate trackers into your software workflow. In contrast, with a mobile GPS tracker, dispatchers can keep track of drivers and send out new routes, all using the same software.
  • Barcode scanning – Modern technology allows you to scan barcodes with your phone and quickly indicate when a package has been delivered. This eliminates the need for drivers to have a dedicated barcode scanner.
  • Automatic notifications – With automatic notifications, your drivers don't have to send updates to customers. Notifications are triggered whenever the driver makes the update.

Final Thoughts

Although the final mile industry can be competitive, with the right workflow and tools, you can stand out and win more business. Contact our sales team directly or book a live demo to try out OnTime delivery software.

7 Ways to Find More Customers for your Courier Company

Whether you've been in the courier industry for a few months or a few decades, finding ways to grow your customer base is always important. There's more competition than ever, and to be successful in business, you have to stand out.

Here are seven things courier businesses can do today to find more customers at little to no cost.

Finding New Markets

Finding new markets is the first step to growing your customer base. Start by looking at your service areas for market expansion opportunities. This could include furniture stores, pharmacies, big-box stores, offices, grocery stores, and restaurants. You can also contract with a larger delivery company, such as FedEx, for final mile delivery.

Many of these niches require a degree of customization, such as refrigeration units, to ensure the products don't spoil before they reach their destination. It's important to consider these additional costs before entering a new market.


Networking is still one of the most effective ways of promoting your business. And best of all, it's very simple. All you have to do is get out there and talk to people.

There are many networking groups available to small businesses. Often, the best place to start is your local chamber of commerce, but there are many other options you can try. Like all industries, success in the courier business has a lot to do with who you know. Relationships and partnerships with the right people can greatly impact the growth of your customer base, and the only way to grow these relationships is by putting the time in.


Creating a website can help you reach a new market, as more and more people will only book delivery services online through a website. With a well-constructed website, you can generate trust and respect from visitors and build brand awareness. You'll want to provide all the important details about your company, including contact information, pricing, and services.

Platforms such as WordPress and Wix make building and managing a website relatively simple. It's also important to make it as easy as possible for customers to make instant bookings and track the status of their parcels. With the right solution, you can link a customer web portal to your website and design it to match, allowing your customers to find everything they need, from order entry to tracking features.

Online Marketing

Online marketing allows you to reach a massive audience. According to a recently conducted survey, 35 percent of respondents stated they use the internet to search for local businesses multiple times every week. Additionally, only 1 percent of those surveyed said they don't search for local businesses online. How can you gain some of these prospects as customers?

One of the most effective ways is through search engine optimization (SEO). Your goal should be to rank with the keywords your target customers are likely to type in when searching for local businesses.

With over four billion active users, social media marketing can also be a productive method. Each channel has a unique user base, so it's important to thoroughly research each to choose which to use for your business. After you've selected the platform, the next step is to source or create content. You can build trust by introducing your followers to the people who make up your company and showcasing how existing customers are using and benefiting from your products.


With each new customer comes an opportunity to find new clients via referrals. According to a study conducted by the Wharton School of Business, referred customers have a 16% higher value than your average customers.

The most important factor for getting these referrals is a high quality of service, but there's more to it. Here are two very effective referral marketing strategies:

  • Rewarding your customers for making referrals increases engagement and brings in new prospects. But for this strategy to be effective, you have to understand your customers and offer them rewards they'll value. For example, you could give them free deliveries for a week, a 20% discount for a month, or gift cards for a local coffee shop.
  • Customer reviews. When choosing between you and a competitor, how does a prospect know that all other things being equal, your business has superior customer service? Good reviews can be the deciding factor, so always display them. You might ask a third-party review site to review your business, post video testimonials on your website, or invite customers to post reviews on your Google business account.


Delivery customers are always looking for the most cost-effective services. Promotions are great for attracting new, long-term clients without permanently lowering your rates.

These incentives are frequently offered as promo codes or volume discounts. Here are a few different possibilities:

  • 50% discount for first-time customers
  • Complete five successful orders, and get one order free
  • 20% off discount code for a new area

Print Advertising

Although online advertising is becoming increasingly common, print advertising can still be effective, especially when targeting local small businesses. In fact, according to a study conducted by Marketing Sherpa, four out of five Americans said they trust print advertising, which was more than any other medium.

Brochures and flyers are an ideal marketing tool for a small budget. Flyers are affordable both to print and distribute. Then, you can create a direct-mail campaign to send them to local businesses.

You could also place an advertisement on your car. Your vehicle is free real estate, so take advantage of it. Once you cover the initial investment, it's a low-cost marketing technique. With customized graphics on your car, you are advertising your business non-stop.

Keeping Customers Happy

Finding new customers is great, but your best results are going to come from keeping your customers happy long-term. The right courier management software can provide the technology you need to bring your business to the next level. Courier software can help you to manage route optimization, software integration, and billing management.

OnTime 360 offers all of this and more. It has both low startup costs and the ability to scale up as your business grows. If you'd like to try it out, contact us to book a live demo or trial.

OnTime 360: Feedback and Updates

A woman makes progress walking up a hill

Giving feedback is easier now than ever and can have a very positive impact. As a delivery business, it’s important to work with a software company that regularly listens to and applies user feedback.

OnTime benefits from a strong community and is constantly improving. The software has dozens of new updates released every few months. To do this well, we prioritize listening to and implementing feedback. 

How do we decide which features of the software to update? To answer this question, let’s look at the two of the biggest factors we consider when choosing which features to update: customer feedback and new technology. 

Implementing Customer Feedback

When you sign up for OnTime, you join a community of dedicated users. Your feedback could improve the user experience for the entire user base. Here are some examples of recent updates:

Advanced Filter/Tracking View

In one of our recent updates, we implemented a user suggestion to create a comprehensive Advanced Filter/Tracking view to help get specific order information and data easily.

Shipping Label Numbering

Another useful feature suggested by an OnTime user is multi-package shipping label compatibility. This now appears by default on shipping labels and allows for a more user-friendly experience for your customers.

Finding Duplicate Data

Dealing with duplicate data can be frustrating. Regardless of how accurate your order entry system is, it’s possible that duplicates will still slip through the cracks. One of our users suggested that we implement a feature that allows you to find and consolidate duplicate data for address books or customer lists. We’ve since implemented this feature and many of our customers have found it useful.

Keeping Up with the Newest Technologies

Every year, technology advances, and customer expectations change. Finding the time to keep up with new technology is difficult for most delivery businesses. We're dedicated to giving businesses the tools they need to compete with industry leaders. Here are some examples of features we've updated and kept current:

Customer Web Portal

A growing number of customers prefer the option to serve themselves via a customer web portal over calling support lines. With the OnTime customer web portal, you can offer your customers access to automatic quotes, order entry, real-time tracking, and more. We’ve kept the web portal up-to-date by steadily adding new features with each new update.

Proof of Delivery

Proof of delivery (POD) has changed a lot in recent years. For example, certain methods, like Photo POD, have seen a rise in popularity due to the COVID-19 pandemic and an increased need for contactless delivery. OnTime has kept up with these changes and has all the POD methods you need for your delivery business.

OnTime was built to be adaptable, and with our ever-growing community of users, we’ve prioritized continually improving the software to meet their needs. If you’re interested in using OnTime as your delivery software, contact our sales team directly or book a live demo. We also offer a 14-day free trial allowing you to take OnTime 360 for a test drive and try all the features for yourself.

Future-Proof Your Delivery Business with Integration Tools

Delivery company making use of an API integration

Delivery businesses face a tough decision. Do you choose an off-the-shelf software that’s easy to set up but is inflexible and has minimal features? Or do you pay a hefty price tag to hire a team of software developers to build a custom solution from scratch?

Small and medium sized courier businesses often don’t have the resources to create a custom solution, and the off-the-shelf software just doesn’t have everything they need.

But what if there was a third option?

OnTime 360 gives courier businesses the tools and customizability they need to compete with the biggest delivery companies in the world. Not only does OnTime have built-in support for many systems, but the software also offers customization tools such as an application programming interface (API) and a software development kit (SDK), to make almost any integration possible.

With the added flexibility of the API and SDK, you can make the software your own. Here are just a few of the possibilities opened up by OnTime’s development tools:

OnTime Development

OnTime API. Your software integration project might not be as expensive or difficult as you think.

Do your clients need software integration? With OnTime’s open API, you can share documents, automatic updates with order status, and more with your customers. Even if you don’t need a specific integration at the moment, it’s likely that you will at some point, and when that time comes, OnTime has got you covered.

The API also makes it possible to build custom functions with your OnTime account, including live-map tracking for customers, custom mobile apps, and website quoting tools.

OnTime SDK. The OnTime Extension SDK allows a developer to control many of the basic functions of an OnTime account. This makes it possible to control how data is read, created, and updated.

Using this approach, a programmer can easily extend the functionality of the OnTime desktop applications. For example, with the SDK, programmers can create hardware integrations, additional accounting software integrations, custom extensions, and more.

Our SDK is a lifesaver for software developers. It provides a collection of tools that enables your developers to build software applications faster and in a more standardized way.

OnTime Extensions

OnTime Extensions are a great way to customize and extend the functionality of OnTime Management Suite and OnTime Dispatch. These extensions are made available to anyone with an OnTime subscription. Here are some of the extensions:

Accounting extensions. Accounting systems require accurate and complete data. With OnTime's extensions for QuickBooks, FreshBooks, and Xero, you can easily transfer customers, invoices, and payments from your OnTime account to the accounting software of your choice. This eliminates mistakes introduced by manual data uploads.

EDI extension. This extension allows users to import and export data, such as purchase orders and invoices, using EDI documents. Although EDI is one of the older document exchange methods, it’s still widely used in the supply chain industry, with somewhere between 59 and 85% of companies adopting the technology.

If you don’t use EDI right now, there’s a good chance one of your customers will in the future, and having access to an EDI extension might just win you a valuable contract.

Scan Barcode to Update Status extension. Update the status of an order by simply scanning a barcode. A wide variety of barcode scanning hardware is supported, both wired and wireless. This feature is especially useful for our users that do bulk sorting and processing.

If you don’t currently have a customer who needs an API or EDI integration, it's a good idea to be ready for one. And if you have a potential integration that you’d like to discuss, contact us to learn more about how these tools can help.

Essential Features of Courier Management Software

A delivery driver uses courier management software to complete a delivery

Finding the right courier management software for your business is vital for success. Courier management software allows companies to manage driver tracking, route optimization, and automatic notifications all from one location.

Choosing the right platform is about finding software that fits your needs. In this article, we’ll cover some of the most important features courier management software can offer your business.

Route Optimization

Route optimization organizes your driver’s stops so that they are as efficient as possible, which leads to savings on vehicle maintenance, fuel, and hours worked. Route optimization also considers delivery time windows, geography, and more. These factors can have a huge impact on the effectiveness of route optimization. And with the right courier management software, you can send optimized routes out to drivers in a single click.

Driver Tracking

In order for your dispatchers to make informed driver assignments, it's important that they have real-time data. With courier management software, you can immediately see which drivers are clocked in, what assignments they have queued up, where they are located, and more. This functionality can help dispatchers to balance their drivers’ workloads and run more efficiently. Tracking can also be accessed by customers, allowing them to monitor the progress of their deliveries.

Automatic Notifications

Customers often want instant status updates on their deliveries, such as when an order is received, in-transit, and delivered. Courier management software allows you to set up automatic notifications to alert customers to any changes to delivery status, keeping your customers in the loop and saving your dispatchers’ time. It not only reduces the likelihood of failed deliveries, but best of all, it increases customer loyalty and satisfaction.


If your customers use their own internal software, with the right solution, you may be able to integrate directly with them. Many courier management systems today allow for some degree of integration, meaning that they can communicate with other software by importing and exporting data. For example, with the right software, it’s possible to integrate with your accounting software, allowing you to automate the movement of data directly from your courier management software.

For even more flexibility, look for a courier management system that offers API integration. API integrations can accomplish a lot. With OnTime, you can process bulk orders quickly and accurately by connecting with your shipper’s software system, allowing you to automatically transfer thousands of orders within seconds. Not only can an API help you to improve the lives of current customers, but you can also win new contracts by advertising your ability to integrate.

OnTime’s courier management system is easy-to-use, has a modern API, and boasts a robust feature set. If you’d like to learn more, contact us for more information.

4 Giants of the Delivery Industry

Delivery van on the way to destination

The delivery industry has seen significant growth in the last decade, making room for new businesses in the food, grocery, and medical delivery fields. A few of the largest delivery companies still hold a majority of the market share, but their rise to the top and continued success offers a lot of insight into a successful delivery model. How have these companies been able to find this much success? And what can your business learn from their example? Here are 4 giants of the delivery industry.


FedEx is an American multinational delivery company that was established in 1971. FedEx is one of the major players in the shipping industry, servicing nearly every country in the world.

It hasn’t always been smooth sailing, though. To get to where it is today, FedEx had to overcome a variety of challenges. For example, in 1986 FedEx created a fax product called ZapMail. Unfortunately, this project was unsuccessful and was discontinued for a loss of $195 million.

In order to overcome this setback, FedEx had to double down on what they were best at. The company put an increased focus on making deliveries fast and reliable. As a result, FedEx was the first shipping service to offer widespread overnight delivery. Even huge companies like FedEx have setbacks, but what sets the best business apart is how they bounce back.

FedEx has never stopped trying to improve what it does. From the beginning, FedEx saw a need and filled it, and then it kept working hard to fill that need in a better way.

The delivery industry is fast-changing. In order to be successful, businesses must learn to adapt like FedEx has done and continues to do.


UPS is a multinational package delivery and supply chain management company. The company was founded in 1907, making it one of the oldest active delivery companies in the world.

The UPS name has become synonymous with shipping and delivery, particularly in the United States. Part of what helped UPS to become so successful is a memorable brand identity that projects reliability, strength, and security.

UPS has one of the best know brand logos in the world for good reason. Despite a variety of changes over the years, the company has maintained a consistent image from day one. Another noteworthy part of UPS’s branding is their ubiquitous brown truck. Although the color isn’t flashy or pretty, it’s certainly recognizable. It also goes along well with UPS’s brand identity of strength and stability.

The example of UPS teaches delivery businesses about the importance of branding. Never underestimate the power of a good brand. Investing some time and money into getting your branding right is well worth the effort.


DHL is a German logistics company providing courier, package delivery, and express mail service. The company group delivers over 1.6 billion parcels per year.

In 2009, DHL made the calculated decision to step away from domestic pickup and delivery service in the United States. This decision was made in an effort to shift into areas where they could better differentiate their business. Instead, DHL Express would have the single focus of being the world’s leading international express shipping company. International express delivery offered higher revenue per shipment and required more customized skills.

This is an important lesson for all businesses to learn from: sometimes you have to be willing to change focus. You may have made your name within a certain industry segment, but it’s okay to change focus to another area if you’ve determined that it’s more profitable.


Amazon is an American technology company founded in July 1994. As of 2021, the company surpassed Walmart as the world's largest retailer outside of China. While Amazon isn't specifically a delivery company, their focus on providing an excellent customer experience through easy and fast deliveries earns them a spot on this list.

Amazon had humble beginnings. It started out as a small online bookseller and grew into an international giant. The company saw a market need and was ready to expand outside the scope of its original business model.

From the very beginning, Amazon prioritized its delivery experience. Even though Amazon only added last-mile delivery in 2018, Amazon has always offered multiple order, delivery, and return options, along with a user-friendly web interface. Whether you’re buying or returning a product, the experience is effortless, so much so that customers always seem to come back for more.

In order to prioritize delivery, Amazon was willing to take risks that other companies were unwilling to take, even in the face of short-term profit loss. This is evidenced by the mentality of Amazon founder Jeff Bezos who said, “We can't be in survival mode. We have to be in growth mode.”

Although it’s true that not all delivery companies are in a position to have such an uncompromising growth strategy, every business can learn from Amazon’s commitment to an excellent customer experience.

Learn from the best

There is a lot to learn from these delivery giants, no matter the size of your business. Each one of these companies has a different business model and different strengths. Although there is no one path to success, being adaptable, customer-centric, and reliable is an incredible predictor of growth.

Are you looking for more tips on improving your knowledge of the delivery industry? Check out our checklist: Finding Success in the Delivery Industry: A 5-point Checklist.


FEDEX is the trademark of Federal Express Corporation. Federal Express Corporation is not associated with OnTime 360. UPS is the trademark of United Parcel Service of America, Inc. United Parcel Service of America, Inc. is not associated with OnTime 360. DHL is the trademark of Deutsche Post AG. Deutsche Post AG is not associated with OnTime 360. Amazon is the trademark of Amazon Technologies, Inc. Amazon Technologies, Inc is not associated with OnTime 360.

5 Keys to Better Route Management

5 Keys to Better Route Management

In the delivery industry, time is money. To stay competitive, delivery companies are constantly looking for ways to become more efficient and cut costs. Route management software is one of the best ways of doing so.

Here are five key ways that OnTime's route management software can help your delivery company to lower operational costs, run more efficiently, and bring in more revenue.

Route Scheduling

Handling recurring orders is a time-consuming process. A good dispatcher can save you hours of work each month, but route scheduling software can eliminate the time spent assigning recurring routes. OnTime’s route management software can also make driver assignment suggestions for orders based on your drivers’ current location. This can help you to update delivery routes quickly when new orders are pouring in.

Order Entry

Order entry requires a high level of speed and accuracy. Every customer has unique needs, such as custom pricing and notifications. Route management software gives you the tools you need to improve your order entry process. OnTime’s software allows dispatchers to look up customers by name, account number, or address. OnTime also offers pricing tools that automatically calculate customer-specific rates during order entry.

Driver Tracking

In order for your dispatchers to make informed driver assignments, it's important that they have real-time updates. With OnTime, you can immediately see which drivers are currently clocked in, where they are located, what assignments they have queued up, and more. This functionality can help you to balance your drivers’ workloads and run your company more efficiently.

Location Management

Delivery businesses need to keep track of a lot of addresses, and it’s important that all the details are accurate. OnTime’s software gives you the ability to organize all your addresses in one database. An address validation feature helps guard against typos and ensures that you’re using real addresses. OnTime also has a proximity validation feature to help avoid misdeliveries. This feature allows you to check a driver's current position against an assigned collection and delivery location.

Route Optimization

Route optimization rearranges your driver’s stops so that they are as efficient as possible, which results in savings on fuel, vehicle maintenance, and hours worked. With OnTime, you can send optimized routes out to your drivers in a single click.

Ready to try out OnTime’s route management software? Contact us for more information.

3 Benefits of Route Optimization Software

How to optimize your delivery routes

If you are new to route optimization, you’re probably aware that it has benefits, but you may still be unsure about the details. The concept of route optimization is simple—rearrange your delivery route stops into the best possible sequence. Route optimization software can help you take into account all the factors needed to do this process effectively.

What is Route Optimization Software?

Route optimization software greatly simplifies the optimization process. It rearranges your driver’s stops so that they are as efficient as possible, taking into account factors such as driver schedules, traffic data, geography, and more. On top of that, it allows you to set up and send out fully optimized routes in just a few clicks.

Can You Manually Plan Routes?

Most companies agree that manually planning routes is not the best use of their time. Doing so takes a lot of time, and even when planned carefully, manually organized routes are rarely perfect.

Planning routes manually becomes increasingly difficult as your team, order volume, and business grows. The more route stops you have, the more time your dispatcher or driver must devote to planning their daily route. Businesses that schedule their routes manually run the risk of dramatically increasing fuel, personnel, and maintenance costs.

3 Advantages of Route Optimization Software

This is where a software solution comes in. Route optimization software uses an algorithm to automatically find the best possible route for you in a matter of seconds.

Here are three advantages of route optimization software:

Save time 

With smart route optimization, you organize entire routes for your drivers ahead of time, so there’s no time spent between deliveries to determine the next stop. But the biggest time-saver is a better-optimized route, saving you miles driven and time on the road. Here is an example that demonstrates just how much time you can save with route optimization. We’ll be comparing an unoptimized route, where the route stops were sequenced in the order they were entered, to a route optimized by OnTime 360: 

An unoptimized route in San Francisco with 8 orders and 16 total stops took 9 hours 6 minutes to complete. When optimized by OnTime 360, this route took 5 hours and 47 minutes to complete. This amounts to 3 ½ hours saved.

Route optimization software considers delivery time windows, geography, and more. These additional factors can have a huge impact on the effectiveness of route optimization. Your drivers' skills and experience are very valuable. Route optimization software provides your dispatchers and drivers with the tools they need to bring your delivery service to the next level.

Reduce costs

Route optimization software leads to less time spent on the road, which results in savings on fuel, personnel, and vehicle maintenance. Businesses can see a 20% to 40% reduction in fuel costs and drive time when using route optimization. Even established businesses have seen significant benefits from upgraded route optimization. For example, a recent improvement to the UPS route optimization system led to a reduction in the distance of driver routes by an average of two to four miles per driver.

Improve the dispatching process

A smart route optimization system can save dispatchers hours of planning and allow them to focus on improving other areas of the business.

OnTime’s route optimization is fully integrated into its delivery software solution. There is no need to import and export route data between programs. Direct integration with OnTime’s mobile app means that optimized routes can be sent to drivers with a single click. 

With OnTime’s route optimization, there is no monthly fee, and it’s easily integrated into your workflow. Ready to try it out? Contact us for more information.

What is Proof of Delivery? How to Choose the Best Method

A driver takes photo proof of delivery

A lot goes into a delivery. When a delivery finally arrives at its destination, there’s just one more thing to do.

Proof of delivery (POD) confirms the time, condition, and the exact recipient of a delivery. POD also gives customers peace of mind knowing that they received their delivery.

There are a few different POD methods—each with their own strengths and weaknesses.

Which method should you use? Different industries have different needs, but there are commonalities regardless of the industry. In this article, we’ll discuss the pros and cons of each of the most common proof of delivery methods.

Signature Collection

The concept of signing for a package is nothing new. Signature capture rose to popularity in the late 1800s and remains the most common POD method today.

Unlike other POD methods, a signature can be used to identify the person delivered to. So, when an item is age restricted, or needs to be delivered to a specific person, signature collection is your best option.

Photo Proof of Delivery

Photo proof-of-delivery has seen an increase in popularity in recent years as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic and an increased need for contactless delivery. With photo POD, drivers can now include a picture of the location delivered to and the package when collected. Customers often appreciate having this added level of assurance.

Barcode Scanning

Barcode scanning is a simple and accurate POD method. Businesses often require that drivers scan a package before it can be marked off as delivered. Barcode POD can be paired with location confirmation. This not only confirms that you’re delivering the right package but that you’re delivering it to the right place.

Time Stamp

Although time stamps aren't a POD method, they are an important element of a good proof of delivery strategy—especially in certain industries. For example, most deliveries in the medical industry require that a time stamp be associated with a signature for auditing purposes. Timestamp information can also help you find more effective ways to use scheduling and route tools.

What is Proof of Delivery Software

Proof of delivery software helps you collect photo and signature POD data quickly and easily. In years past, proof of delivery required a signature capture device, barcode scanner, camera, and somewhere to store all this information.

With OnTime, you have access to all these POD methods in one central location. OnTime Mobile is fully integrated with OnTime’s cloud-based data system, allowing POD to be uploaded automatically. OnTime also has a customer web portal where your customers can see signatures, photos, and time stamps for delivery.

With an OnTime subscription, you gain access to advanced features for proof of delivery along with all the tools you need for your courier service. Ready to try it out? Contact us for more information.