The importance of (automatic) notification: better service, less effort

Stefan Seufert, CTO/Vorstand EIKONA AG
End customer looks at clock because delivery was not automatically notified and is late.

Your parcel will arrive today between 12:30 and 13:40.” Anyone who has ever ordered something online will recognise this phrase – and certainly appreciate it, as it’s good to roughly know when the much-anticipated parcel will arrive. When ordering larger items, such as a mattress or a new wardrobe, it’s not always that easy. You rarely know exactly when you can expect the delivery because there is no driver notification, or the message does not arrive due to missing telephone numbers or language barriers. Today, automatic notification solutions can easily take over this task, including scheduling – not only in the B2B sector, but also B2C.


EIKONA Logistics Cloud

Software for recipient notification

With EIKONA Notification you announce the delivery or collection of a consignment - as if by itself via e-mail, SMS or automatic voice call.

What notification software means for haulage companies and customers

Relieving employees, improving (and speeding up!) the organisation of transport, increasing customer satisfaction and reducing the costs of the entire process? All this is possible with modern software from the cloud that enables automatic notifications. Specifically, companies are offered these options:

  • Automatic despatch advice immediately after receipt of order
  • Fully automatic telephone notification
  • Uninterrupted transport
  • Free appointment coordination
  • Sale of additional services
  • Fully digital order management

Recipients benefit most from automatic notification. After all, they know exactly when the delivery will be made and can prepare for it. But that’s not all: they don’t have to wait for the carrier to call (and avoid connection problems or language barriers) but can choose a time slot for the delivery when booking. The delivery process can then be tracked live via a convenient portal – gone are the days when you had to block out an entire day at home to wait for the delivery, which could arrive any time between seven in the morning and the end of the working day.

What does “notifying” mean?

Notification has an important role to play in logistics. Roughly speaking, it involves providing information about the delivery or collection of goods in advance. Whether in the B2B or B2C sector, shipping notifications make a significant contribution to the success of delivery attempts. In addition, incoming and outgoing goods can be planned, controlled and, if necessary, readjusted much more precisely. The shipping notification from a forwarding agent contains the following points: Item description and number, quantity, weight and/or volume as well as the delivery date. The information is passed on to the recipient by an employee in the call centre or a voice computer.

Notifications are also used in the financial sector. There, it acts as advance information about the receipt of a payment. A payment notification contains information such as the amount, invoice date and number and any discounts or credit notes.


How to achieve notification quickly and cost-effectively

If each general cargo consignment has to be individually notified to the recipient, this not only costs time but also money. After all, the packages must arrive at the receiving company before the appointment is made and be stored temporarily until the delivery has been notified. This interrupts the transport process, and this intermediate step also blocks handling space in the warehouse. If, on the other hand, the notification is sent directly after the order is received – by e-mail, text message or voice computer –, the receiving company can deliver the consignment on the day it arrives.


Automatic notification vs. manual shipping notifications: a calculation example

If a freight forwarding employee picks up the phone every time to notify a shipment, that takes a lot of time. As an example, let’s calculate with 10,000 consignments to be notified per month in the haulage company. Even if each manual notification only takes two minutes, that’s over 300 hours, the equivalent of around 41 working days! The commercial staff who would be entrusted with this task can therefore take on more urgent tasks if a voice computer or call centre is used. In this way, the automatic notification rate can be increased to almost 100 per cent. Even if the freight forwarder has received hardly any information about the end customer from the client, for example if neither an e-mail address nor the mobile phone number is available, the notification can be issued automatically: The voice computer also arranges the desired appointment independently via the landline telephone number. In addition, the software solution autonomously monitors that each recipient books a time slot for delivery.

Notification in practice: our use cases

Would you like to know how the online notification system is used in your company? Read the report on the practical implementation here.


The importance of notification for private recipients

Automatic notification brings enormous advantages, especially when it comes to deliveries to private customers. The desired delivery date, which is automatically taken over by the voice computer, ensures that the recipient receives the delivery at a time when he can accept it. The automatic driver notification goes one step further: based on the position data of the delivering lorry, the voice computer can automatically announce the delivery to the recipient. This means fewer additional tasks for the driver, reduces the susceptibility of processes to errors and also removes the potential language barrier. But that’s not all: the notification software can be used not only to arrange appointments and announce a delivery, but also to offer additional services. Do you want to arrange alternative dates or offer additional services such as the assembly of furniture? No problem, this can be easily realised via the associated Internet portal and provides an additional source of income.

Conclusion

Automatic notification means better service and lower costs

Automatic notification makes the entire last-mile delivery process faster, safer and cheaper. In conjunction with the position-based automatic driver notification, time windows create additional planning security. Transparency is significantly increased – after all, the end customer can find out about the transport process and the current status and therefore knows exactly when the consignment will reach them. This ensures that delivery attempts are more likely to be successful the first-time round. What’s more, recipients receive their goods earlier, which pleases them on the one hand and saves the haulage companies handling space on the other: a win-win. The result is an improvement in customer service with less effort – that’s a fun calculation!


Stefan Seufert
Stefan Seufert
CTO

As a design guru, the software developer delves into logistics service providers' requirements like no other. He is passionate about exchanging information securely and efficiently and thus speeding up the physical logistics process.


Add a comment

Please add 3 and 8.