While ruggedised hardware and integrated barcode scanning will always have an important role to play in the parcel delivery sector, the rise of bring your own device (BYOD) policies has made it possible for couriers and carriers to extend the reach of proof of delivery (POD) data capture.
“Low cost smartphones, whether supplied by the organisation or the courier themselves, allow businesses to extend the reach of POD data capture into areas where it was not previously cost effective, such as temporary workers, seasonal courier staff or postal workers with only a few tracked items,” Paul Ridden, managing director of Skillweb, said.
BYOD certainly seems to be the answer to the industry’s prayers, dealing not just with scanning requirements but placing the delivery sector at the forefront of the latest technology.
According to BT and Cisco’s ‘Beyond Your Device’ report, 48 per cent of employees are now able to connect personally owned devices to their corporate network across all sectors. Of those workers prohibited from using their own hardware, 72 per cent believe they would benefit from doing so. A further 14 per cent claim they would like to benefit from a BYOD policy in future.
In fact, Gartner predicts that by 2019, 90 per cent of all organisations will have personal data on IT systems that they don’t own or control.
This means that if delivery companies want to keep pace, they need to fully embrace emerging technological platforms and policies – especially during peak.
“Skillweb research has highlighted that at peak in many cases there are not enough rugged mobile devices to go round,” Mr Ridden explained. “Getting the ones you do have into the right place and back from temporary workers is costly and time consuming. Often capital budgets are tied up in hardware for the rest of the year.
“Its quite alarming how many POD’s are captured on paper during these busy periods. Online retailers tell us that they are left vulnerable at Christmas not knowing if deliveries have been made until after the Christmas close down.”
However, BYOD policies mean workers come already technologically enabled and ready to go.
Unsurprisingly, many leading online retailers are now specifying couriers and carriers come equipped with SmartTask POD during peak periods.
SmartTask POD from Skillweb can be easily downloaded onto an incumbent worker’s phone from Android or iPhone stores. Providing better real-time visibility of deliveries, the solution is the perfect contingency backup application for couriers and carriers, removing the need to equip temporary workers with costly rugged handsets.
Delivery workers can scan parcels, create exceptions and capture signatures upon successful delivery. The solution is capable of deployment across platforms, enabling businesses to pick and choose the most suitable handset for each employee, be it rugged, semi-rugged or a even a phone/tablet. SmartTask POD is also available as a standalone reporting module and will integrate seamlessly with existing tracking solutions.
“With the uptake of SmartTask POD it will allow more deliveries to be tracked, allow retailers and carriers to manage customer expectations and have a greater control on delivery issues. SmartTask POD brings 100 per cent paperless delivery within the reach of all carriers and manage delivery issues more effectively,” Mr Ridden said.
“This peak a number of carriers and postal organisations are equipping their temporary staff with smartphones loaded with SmartTask POD,” he continued. “Others are giving temporary workers an allowance to help fund their own Smartphones. The current functionality within SmartTask POD is only the start with a roadmap of more comprehensive functionality in development that will make SmartTask POD the best choice.”