The Last Mile Delivery Problem: Solving the Quandary

One last mile delivery problem weakens a customer’s loyalty to any brand or company. That’s why as recovery continues and markets slowly return to normalcy, last mile optimization continues to drive forward local and global supply chains.

The continued growth of global supply chain networks and the rising need for reliable logistics, last mile services, and logistics service management will not wane anytime soon. It will likely continue to drive trends and profits. According to a 2021 research report, “the global supply chain management market size was valued at $15.85 billion in 2019, and is projected to reach $37.41 billion by 2027, growing at a CAGR of 11.2% from 2020 to 2027.”

Organizations that focus on the last mile delivery problem and rapidly deploy solutions access a competitive advantage in serving the demands of the modern supply chain.

Understanding the Last Mile Delivery Problem

Dealing with last mile optimization needs is central to short-term and long-term success within the transportation industry. Several common pain points impact last-mile logistics and delivery execution. Understanding these problems and obstacles is critical to improving customer experience and relations. Outdated processes can lead to a host of last mile delivery problems. These include:

  • Poor visibility throughout the supply chain.
  • Lack of automated notifications and communication.
  • Mismanagement of transportation costs.
  • Slow and sub-par response to problems.
  • Lack of real-time insights into last mile delivery.
  • Black holes of no updates or reports on cargo.
  • Error-prone approach to final mile logistics.
  • Increased occurrence of errors and mistakes.
  • Poor collaboration with carriers and 3PLs.
  • Higher shipping, accessorial, and operational costs.

Improving last mile service options allows shippers to avoid these and other issues related to poor optimization and management of last-mile deliveries and better understand the state of last mile services.

What Is Last Mile Optimization, and Why Does It Matter?

A crucial part of improving last mile delivery is ensuring that each pickup or delivery is matched with the best driver at the right time, location, and ETA. The key to achieving perfect last mile optimization is to:
  1. Track data related to every shipment in real-time and use digital methods to keep all records organized and accessible.
  2. Identify which drivers best suit individual loads, delivery routes, or destinations.
  3. Continuously update ETAs and allow automated notifications to send to all parties when key events are triggered.
  4. Consider the final mile and its impact on brand image and company performance related to overall transportation spending.

The last mile delivery problem is complex. Optimizing last mile services makes it possible for team members to get the data and insights that shippers need to know to keep things moving.

What Last Mile Delivery Optimization Looks Like

Unlike traditional last mile dynamic route planning, last mile optimization considers a host of other factors, disruptions, and what-if scenarios that are likely to occur at some point and time. For example, consider the difference between a regular last mile delivery plan and an optimized last mile service route:

  • A truck stops to pick up an initial load of 12 orders and then proceeds to make all 12 deliveries, which involves a single load of deliveries and an empty truck at the end.
  • A truck picks up another 12-order initial load, makes four deliveries, picks up two more, delivers three more, then picks up six more before ending the day with cargo on the truck for the following day.

The modern market and customer demand for fast and convenient delivery services have complicated the last mile delivery problem, making the need for insightful options vital. Embracing innovations and tech capabilities for final mile logistics and delivery are the foundation of reliable delivery services.

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Choose MercuryGate for Better Last Mile Services

The last mile delivery problem is varied and complicated. Unfortunately, no one-size-fits-all method or approach will address all needs and concerns.

Optimizing last mile services and constantly looking for new and innovative ways to deal with last mile delivery issues is a must for transportation providers. For a deeper dive into the last mile problem and MercuryGate’s solutions, download our eBook, Last Mile Optimization: Solving the Last Mile Delivery.

See how to overcome diversity in your last mile.

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