Tuesday, February 06, 2007

Route Accounting and Proof of Delivery on Mobile Handheld PDAs

I have been programmed, by my work with mobile software solutions for handheld PDAs, to see opportunities everywhere. I drive my wife crazy... One of the reasons is my habit of constantly calling out phone numbers while driving down the street. Why?...I can't stand seeing people delivering packages and cargo while not wearing a handheld computer on their belt. I feel an intense sense of responsibility to make their life and work better. We all have a purpose in life and this is mine.

Here are a few ways that a mobile software application for a handheld PDA can make the life of a delivery man better:
  1. Electronic proof of delivery form - sign the screen here, capture the digital signature and synchronize with the office...this enables the company to prove delivery at a designated location and time and show this on a website instantly.
  2. Allows the delivery man (or woman) to look up past deliveries at this location, or instantly track the status of other in-process deliveries. This provides better customer service at the point of delivery.
  3. Allows the delivery man to take orders on the handheld computer, and up-sell additional products and services to the customer at the time of delivery.
  4. Allows the delivery man to inspect and report any damage to the cargo at the time of delivery. Saves time and resolves liability issues immediately without additional investment of time.
  5. Vehicle tracking with a GPS enabled handheld computer allows the warehouse or office to see the location of all delivery vehicles. This enables better planning of routes and dispatches which saves time and fuel.
  6. Grocery store product delivery folks can have "planograms" on their handheld devices which predict how much of each product each particular store needs. They can load their cart with a predicted amount of products which saves time and money.
  7. etc

One of my sales team members once said to me, "our market is anyone driving around with a logo on their door." I must agree. If business is being conducted away from the desk, in a mobile environment, a handheld computer and mobile software solutions have relevance.