Entrepreneur Sam Rohn has a pet peeve: bad customer service.
His previous venture relied on couriers to deliver meal shakes, but the couriers were either too pricey or unreliable. When a parcel went missing, the courier company took one month to react. With exorbitant prices and inconsistent customer service, Sam knew he could do better.
So he started Red je Pakketje, a same-day courier service in the Netherlands. With a fleet of 29 vehicles and growing, we talked to COO, Tijs van Driel, about how he embraces technology to offer same-day delivery to an entire nation.
1. Running a same-day courier business must be hectic. How do you deal?
I have a team of 6 route planners, including myself. Because we run a same-day delivery service across the country, you can imagine how much time it takes to route.
Our cut-off time is currently 1:00 pm to make sure we have enough time to deliver. We’re working towards shifting this cut off time to later in the afternoon, so customers can get late orders in and still receive their packages that same day.
2. What are some of the biggest challenges your business faces?
Time. Our time is so limited, especially since our customers rely on us to deliver on the same day.
That’s why it’s really important we have a system in place to help us plan our logistics quickly and efficiently.
3. How did you plan your routes before Routific?
During our first month of operation, we used a system similar to Google Maps. However, it only allowed us to route 50 stops at one time. With Routific, we’re able to route thousands of stops a day in a very short time.
4. Any tips and tricks for aspiring/current route planners?
Expect the unexpected.
Remember: not everything is in your control. It’s normal to have unexpected delays or have trucks that break down, or worse — both. As a rule of thumb for route planners, always have a plan B or even C. You’ll never know when you have to use it.
Next to that, communicate with your customers. No one likes to wait without knowing what is going on. Treat your customers the same as you would like to be treated yourself.
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