Google announces two fleet management solutions to optimize delivery operations.
Fleet management solutions continue to have an increasing demand as businesses look to manage their supply chains better. Since the COVID-19 pandemic, e-Commerce adoption has increased which has led to a strain in the supply chain. Customers today want fast delivery and constant visibility on their purchases.
For businesses, this would mean having a system in place that can meet customer expectations. While most of the processes can be sped up and simplified digitally, from the moment the customer picks a product to payment, there is still a delay in the last mile delivery.
In fact, last-mile delivery is expected to make up more than half of total shipping costs. Last-mile fleet operators need to have a complete fleet management solution that can not only cater to better customer experiences but also improve their operations.
According to Hans Thalbauer, Managing Director, Global Supply Chain & Logistics Industries at Google Cloud, the pandemic further accelerated both e-Commerce and the number of deliveries, which were already growing rapidly. He added that the increased strain on delivery networks, plus many other factors like driver shortages, poor address data, factory closures, and an increase in fuel prices have impacted delivery time and success.
As such, Google has announced two solutions to improve fleet management. The Last Mile Fleet Solution and Cloud Fleet Routing API can help fleet operators address these challenges through an integrated suite of mapping, routing, and analytics capabilities.
Cloud Fleet Routing API focuses on the route planning phase of delivery and allows operators to perform advanced fleet-wide optimization, enabling them to determine the allocation of packages to delivery vans and the sequencing of the delivery tasks. Integrated with Google Maps routes data, Cloud Fleet Routing API can solve simple route planning requests in near-real-time, and scale to the most demanding of workloads with parallelized request batching.
When it comes to fleet management and the supply chain, operators can specify a variety of constraints, such as time windows, package weights, and vehicle capacities. Cloud Fleet Routing also runs on the cleanest cloud in the industry, helping operators meet sustainability targets by reducing the distance traveled, number of delivery vans, and CO2 output from computing.
Meanwhile, Last Mile Fleet Solution focuses on delivery execution and allows fleet operators to optimize across every stage of the last-mile delivery journey, from e-Commerce order to doorstep delivery. Not only does the solution help businesses create exceptional delivery experiences for consumers, but it also provides drivers the tools they need to perform at their best when completing tasks throughout the day.
The Last Mile Fleet Solution builds on the on-demand Rides & Deliveries mobility solution from Google Maps Platform, which is already used by leading ride-hailing and on-demand delivery operators around the world.
When implemented together, both solutions allow businesses to optimize across every stage of the last-mile delivery journey, with features such as:
- Address capture to help obtain an accurate address and location for each pickup or delivery.
- Route optimization to help ensure drivers are provided with routes that optimize around the fleet’s constraints—including delivery time windows—and adapt based on real-time traffic.
- Driver routing & navigation to deliver a seamless driver experience and improve route compliance with in-app navigation powered by Google Maps.
- Shipment tracking to keep consumers updated with live, day-of shipment tracking, including up-to-date location and arrival times of customer packages.
- Fleet performance to enable visibility into real-time route progress and shipment insights for operations teams.
“With Google Maps Platform’s Last Mile Fleet Solution and Cloud Fleet Routing API, we’re making it easier for delivery fleet operators to address these issues and create seamless experiences for consumers, drivers, and fleet managers,” commented Thalbauer.
For operators like flaschenpost SE and Paack Logistics, the fleet management solutions have enabled them to not only meet customer demand but also improve on their overall performance.