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Buy It Direct improves delivery efficiency with new management system


Online electricals retailer Buy It Direct has rolled out a new workforce management system across its nationwide delivery fleet in an effort to improve efficiency and customer satisfaction in its fulfilment of orders to customers.
The company, whose brands include Laptops Direct and Appliances Direct delivers thousands of electrical appliances directly to consumers daily and manages end-to-end product fulfilment for national retailers including Debenhams.

The company has rolled out BigChange’s JobWatch Mobile Workforce Management platform, a system that combines cloud-based delivery planning and scheduling, an Android mobile app for drivers and real-time tracking of the vehicle fleet.

With fast efficient next day delivery being a key part of Buy It Direct’s offering, the company needed a solution that would replace its previous paper-based system, including paper-based manifests and delivery notes that drivers were required to collect in the morning and return for processing and filing at the end of each day. Without real-time visibility of the operation, the contact centre were making multiple phone calls to drivers to check the status of deliveries.

The new solution is fully integrated with Buy it Direct’s routing software and the entire delivery process is automated on Samsung tablets. At the start of each day, drivers start their timesheet and complete an electronic vehicle walkaround check, logging any defects that are automatically alerted to fleet managers. Drivers have instant access to their delivery manifest and the app navigates them efficiently from job to job, with the benefit of live Google traffic information. Customers automatically receive a courtesy message by text message, giving them an accurate ETA for delivery. On arrival, items are scanned and verified using the JobWatch app and photos taken before, during and after each drop, providing robust proof of delivery and product condition. Custom worksheets guide the delivery team step by step through installation procedures. Additional photos are captured for installation of white goods (e.g. test washes and connection to water and waste pipes). Proof of delivery with signature is captured at the end of the process. This information is instantly relayed to the back office and customers immediately receive delivery confirmations by email.

Mick Eaton, operations manager for Buy It Direct, said: “The BigChange system means the delivery team and our customer contact centre are always in perfect sync. Our advisors are empowered to instantly answer any questions and have a real-time view of the operation. The robust proof of service is invaluable in dealing with customer queries and protects our drivers and the business from false damage claims or fraudulent activity.”

The new system has also improved the efficiency of their delivery operations since previously too much time was allocated to each drop. Now more drops are taking place per vehicle per day and capacity across the operation has been increased without the cost of additional drivers or vehicles.

Image credit: BigChange

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