some things to take into consideration when drafting your “last mile” strategy:
Territory and road infrastructure Learn to have a good understanding of road conditions and travel time necessary for delivery. Also, take into consideration seasonality and how rainy season will affect your distribution. There aren’t all roads that can be used during the rainy season and your method of transport, e.g. 4-wheel-drive might also change. Road infrastructure and seasonality may also affect the design of your network, e.g. creating routes.
Services delivery points growth In a wide range of African markets there are ambitious plans to expand and extend the reach of health facilities final mile services. It is important to consider the impact that this might impact the supply chain or pipeline.
Distribution centres (DCs) or cross docking Cross docking Africa distribution distances tend to be long and DCs have a limited. Driver per diems can add cost and reduce truck utilization. Examine the need for additional DCs as well as the role that cross docking can play in streamlining distribution processes and decreasing costs.
Demand plan – Tanzania has changed from the push system (demand established at the central levels) to pulling system (demand set at healthcare facility levels). Health workers in health facilities are accountable for providing demand requirements (or R&R forms). Common issues are delays in submitting forms and limited capabilities or capacity to finish forms. It is vital to determine and identify the sources of bottlenecks. Find out what you can do to simplify the process, e.g. restrict the pull to specific Stock Keeping Units, and assist in reducing the workload of health workers, e.g. create demand coordinators for regional areas.
Ordering cycle Review the ordering cycle (or frequency) along with order groupings If any. Examine unplanned orders and the volumes per drop for each sector, e.g. health facilities versus dispensaries.
Scheduling Ad-hoc deliveries are to be assessed, particularly in the “last mile” level. Verify that the scheduling documentation is in place.
The delivery processCalculate how long the delivery process will take (time) and then review the delivery guidelines in writing. For instance that in Tanzania every item delivered to villages must be inspected through The Village Health Committee. It is a good system to assure checks and balances but it is also a risk to cause delays due to committee members not being present.
Make sure to use the correct vehicles – The Landcruiser is a popular choice, but it is not always the ideal vehicle to do the task. Many African nations have inadequate infrastructure but Landcruisers, with high capital costs, are not always required. Check out my previous blog post regarding this issue.
Incentives for distribution Consider how incentivizing employees can increase efficiency. Incentive programs could focus on the speed of turning around trucks, loading and dispatching.
It is the use of 3rd party distributors 3rd party distributors (3PLs) are able to play an important role in distribution. Local operators allow you to benefit from a cheaper structure, and also offer greater flexibility.
Fourth party logistical (4PL) (also known as transportation agents) The term “4PL” is defined as an organization that gathers the resources, capacities, and technology of its own and other organizations to design logistics solutions for supply chains. In Africa the health institutions tend to be limited in capacity and capability to identify and manage 3rd parties that distribute. 4PLs or agents can be expected to play an important role in this regard and assist in reducing the amount of work for health workers. Local operators or 4PLs can also be in better position to negotiate better transportation rates and control their schedules.
A reliable courier service can aid in the growth of your business and will help you keep customers. We all know the amount it will cost to win the trust of a client, and then effort is required to keep them. If we are investing in our business to increase our market share, we frequently neglect one aspect of our customers ‘ experience the delivery. it’s delivery.
Many companies offer an online component of their services in order to make it easier for customers to make reservations and pay for their items. Next comes the fulfillment of the order and the delivery.
Often , the fulfillment part is done in house and the delivery process is contracted out to the postal service, an express courier or next day delivery courier. The customer is rarely unhappy when their items are delivered by a same day courier. However, they frequently complain about received a delivery from a parcel courier.
Because businesses are focusing solely on the cost of transport and do not consider the overall impact of what happens when they seek to save money . The customer is able to go elsewhere.
I recently polled business owners on Twitter, 77% indicated that their most annoying thing was not being in for an item and having to drive away from town to collect the parcel.
This is the scenario,
The customer is able to find your business,
They can order online.
You will be able to send the items
When they get home, they find they’ve missed a delivery
Then they travel 20 miles to get the parcel.
Then they drive 20 miles back to home.
They’re happy with the package, however, that isn’t enough to offset the anxiety they feel about having take it to the post office to pick it up. A positive buying experience has been affected through the process of delivery.
The mail service can also be effective in this way, and at the least in this case, they needn’t drive away from the city to pick up their package. Instead, they are able to visit the local sorting station. The drawback for the customer receiving the parcels is that they are limited to office hours, or the working hours of the courier.
The cost of acquiring clients is the largest part of the marketing budget. With the right courier service, you can maintain and grow your business. Do a little research and in turn this will give your company huge returns and will keep your customers faithful.