When creating routes for the vehicles in your fleet, several variables compete for your attention including variations in the priority of stops, different pick-up and delivery times and vehicle types. But you are also likely focused on the overall mileage demanded of each route—and with good reason. The total distance that your vehicles are traveling has a direct impact on costs, not only from fuel but from additional wear-and-tear which leads to increased maintenance costs.
Obviously, the shortest route across multiple stops should be the least expensive and most efficient. But planning and maintaining routes to achieve this goal can be challenging. And even the most well-designed routes can fall victim to unforeseen issues, like unexpected traffic patterns and road construction detours.
Getting your routes right can make a big difference to your budget and is well worth leveraging the time—and in most cases, the right technologies—to enable you to quickly and efficiently manage multiple routes to optimal levels. Consider your capabilities in the following key areas of optimal route management. How well supporting is your process for each of these areas:
Create the Route
Ideally, this should be via an intuitive interface that lets you add stops by address, pick-list or input file from an external source like an order management system. You should be able to specify stop order, vehicle and driver information and scheduled times.
Adjust the Route
When unplanned events happen or last-minute requests demand changes, you should be able to quickly access and re-sequence a route, adjust its start and end time, and see expected arrival times for each stop. This helps you continually respond to the changing landscape of customer needs.
Monitor the Route
Once underway, you should be able to access all details from any of the multiple routes you’re managing in a given day. The ideal approach gives you complete visibility to all vehicle locations along each route at any time.
Leading fleet intelligence solutions, like Orion’s, make route optimization easy-to-achieve and easy-to-manage. The resulting output of tools like these delivers benefits right to your budget. If you’re not currently using an automated solution that can supplement your routing strategy, consider investigating how tools like these can play a critical role in your overall fleet operational efficiency.
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