Adopting No-Contact Delivery
Our society is under siege and people are isolating to protect themselves and others. Their new behavior is to stay at home and order things online. Their new need is safe deliveries without physical contact.
There’s an abundance of statistics showing the increased demand for online deliveries. While the recent health crisis is yet too current to provide up-to-date data, anecdotal conversations with our customers indicate that demand is exploding in several market segments, with no-contact delivery fast becoming the new norm. Carriers are scrambling to face this new reality.
This blog offers best practices to quickly set up a no-contact delivery process for your customers.
Safety considerations for last mile deliveries:
UCLA and Princeton University scientists in The New England Journal of Medicine found that “severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) was detectable in aerosols for up to three hours, up to four hours on copper, up to 24 hours on cardboard and up to two to three days on plastic and stainless steel.”
The questions customers will ask to reassure them that a safe delivery process has been put in place:
Have you put in place a 24-48-hour order staging area depending on the parcel material?
What sanitary pick-up process or hygiene policies are in place?
Have you provided updated driver safety and hygiene instructions?
- What are you doing to make sure that your staff is not going to be in physical proximity with anyone? In other words, is there a contactless delivery workflow process in place in the Driver application to replace current processes that require physical proximity such as signature on delivery or ID verification?
- Have you removed contact-based deliveries from your lists of available options?
- Have you implemented social distancing policies within your organization and replaced face-to-face communications with digital communication wherever possible?
Unless you’ve already made these changes, they need to be clearly communicated to customers and applied in your delivery process NOW!
- Emulate what major delivery companies have already done to protect themselves and their customers. Fedex, USPS, UPS, DHL and others widely communicate the actions they have taken to create a safe and sanitary work environment. They have also updated their service levels and suspended most of their warranties. We suggest you check their websites and use the information to your advantage.
- Replace all contact-based options with photo proof of delivery at the doorstep. This process is rapidly being adopted by many carriers.
- Replace ring/knock on door with email or sms alerts.
- If it’s an existing business practice, replace cash tips with online tipping.
- Update your returns policy to protect your people.
Customers expect no-contact delivery today and it’s here to stay. Do not delay your implementation!
*Our way of helping during the crisis: Free Delivery Management System
Offered by Dispatch Science to Qualified COVID-19 Volunteer Organizations
In part 1 of this blog, we looked at the security aspects of delivery for modern medical carriers. In part 2, we look at key value-add services a modern delivery platform can provide to help you and your clients stand out.
1. Reduce customer service calls and increase productivity with down-to-the-minute Uber-precise delivery ETA’s
You are delivering life-saving medical goods, highly controlled narcotics or time-sensitive parcels. Consequently, recipients demand ultimate visibility on delivery times. For instance, nurses or doctors need precise ETA’s to optimize their patient care procedures. It’s now possible to share up-to-the-minute ETA’s based on driver location and push status updates at any time via email or SMS. As a result, your clients will see a significant reduction in call center activity and increased staff productivity.
2. Piggyback Efficiencies and Savings
How do you leverage your existing infrastructure to onboard a new healthcare customer? Most often, special dedicated routes must be set-up at great cost to meet their unique needs. With a modern delivery platform, it is now possible to leap ahead of competitors by merging deliveries of these new clients into your existing on-demand and dedicated network! Healthcare clients enjoy custom service while still benefiting from the economies of scale of a multi-client carrier.
3. Extend Geographic Coverage
No medical carrier wants to lose customer just because a few deliveries lie outside their coverage area. That’s why you have agreements in place with external agents to extend your delivery network. With a best-in-class driver mobile app you can add any agent driver who carries a smartphone to your network. Now you seamlessly provide the same 100% ETA visibility experience to customers who have deliveries that lie outside your standard coverage area.
4. Provide Tracking Numbers that Make Sense to the Client
Modern API’s allow live links between internal and external databases. Take customer care one step further by replacing your internal data with easier-to-find tracking numbers. For instance, in the case of pharma, use prescription numbers (Rx #’s). The information that’s most convenient to your customer and their clients is displayed as a tracking number, making communications easier for everyone.
5. Support and Extend your Customer’s Brand
Your customers are delivering sensitive goods, often in branded packages. Because trust is so important in Healthcare, providing a unified brand experience to patients or other recipients is vital to your customers. You can stand out from your competitors by offering a branded delivery tracking page!
Choose Dispatch Science to Grow your Medical Carrier Business
While internal savings and productivity enhancements to meet requirements of your healthcare customers are key criteria for selecting a new last mile delivery shipping system, make sure you also:
- Provide the security levels clients need to meet increasingly strict regulatory requirements
- Give them the 100% real time tracking they need to save lives
- Offer new value that will delight them and keep them loyal for years to come
Dispatch Science can be your partner of choice in building a durable competitive advantage for your medical carrier business.
About the author: Jacques Lamontagne
Jacques is head of Product Marketing at Dispatch Science. He has over 15 years of experience in product marketing and management with various technology companies such as Open Text, Corel Corporation and Ubisoft. He also spend 9 years at Canada’s largest parcel logistics vendor, providing innovative turnkey solutions to enterprise customers and in Marketing for their eBusiness division.
With the ever-growing emphasis on last-mile delivery, carriers aren’t in the delivery business – they’re in the data business. But once-a-day updates aren’t enough any more. Customers want real-time visibility into their shipment location, and immediate proof of delivery.
Data-driven visibility is transforming the last mile through route optimization and improved driver performance and safety. Dispatchers can monitor and manage in real time, addressing issues as they happen rather than putting out fires all day. For instance, dispatchers can monitor drivers’ hours of service time and make decisions in the best interests of the customers and the drivers.
Supply Chain Management Weekly examined the role of data in transforming the last-mile delivery space. Read the full article here.