How a Well-Developed Mobile App can Streamline Logistics in your Business

August 16, 2022

By: John Tomblin, Senior Solutions Architect
Scottsdale Bizz, a division of Sofvue, LLC
Printed with permission of Sofvue, LLC and the author

Logistics is, in my opinion, one of the future’s most important factors, not just in the supply chain, but in manufacturing, warehousing and so much more. I watched a new media special last week discussing how large drones (the size of a shipping container) might someday be loaded with packages that are then dropped shipped (literally) from the “mother drone” as it makes its way through neighborhoods or retail centers… without a single care about traffic, ingress, egress or fuel. Look out Star Wars, here comes the future -- and at breakneck speed.

Logistics can be a very complex business, and it's getting more complicated every day. Whether you own a fleet of trucks or are in charge of the whole supply chain management, you know how difficult it is to coordinate, manage, and track all the moving pieces involved in your daily operations.

That’s where the right mobile app can save the day.  Smartphones are relatively inexpensive (for business purposes), fit in your pocket, are connected 24/7 with the cloud, or by towers, and they are simple to use. Add G5 to the mix, with its massive computing power and speed, and you have all the technology you need to make it work for your business.

Here are some ways you can benefit from customized mobile app development.

1- Track real-time data

Mobile apps can be used to track real-time data. This means real information, in real-time, tracking everything from the location of the aircraft, and shipping vessel to the delivery vehicle. There are even systems now that generate logistics information inside warehouses using Bluetooth and other software to provide real-time inventory information within an 8 to10-meter radius.

Mobile apps are also the right fit when you want to keep track of data points related to logistics. A few examples include:

~ Data analytics (tracking vehicles, packages, employees, and customers)

~ Tracking assets (equipment, deliveries, and invoices)

~ Monitoring expenses (payments made) or payments due

~ Tracking inventory

2- Automated route optimization

Route optimization is a valuable tool for improving supply chain efficiency. The technology can help you optimize routes for efficiency, reduce costs and improve customer satisfaction.

It can also be used to respond to changing conditions such as weather or traffic, helping avoid delays. As such, automated route optimization provides an excellent way of streamlining your logistic ops and optimizing your routes by taking into account real-time data and in many cases, real-time customer feedback.

This, in turn, enables you to cut fuel costs while improving productivity and maximizing the value of your fleet.

3- Streamlined communication

Mobile apps allow you to connect with drivers, suppliers, and receivers using voice, text, and with more modern systems, video.

Additionally, you can use mobile apps to collect customer feedback. Customers can easily send their thoughts and suggestions (without leaving the app). In turn, and with the feedback needed to improve operations, and when launching new services or optimizing old ones, you can hear from your customers and ensure that what they want is actually what they get.

This is also a great way to ensure that your current users are happy with the service they're getting; and if not, fix it before it becomes too much of an issue. This kind of feedback will help keep those users loyal to your brand and make them more likely to stay with you in the future.

4- Enhance Customer Experience

A mobile app can help deliver a better customer experience as customers increasingly use mobile devices. As such, logistics businesses that include a mobile platform as part of their business plan can:

~ Give customers access to order tracking and delivery information while they’re waiting for their order to arrive at their doorstep

~ Allow customers to place orders from anywhere, not just from a physical store or office

~ Enable support through 24/7 channels

Mobile Apps to Grow Your Business

Mobile apps are not the future, they are the now. Ten years ago, I would tell business owners that mobile is the path of the future or a “nice to have”.  That is no longer true.  Today, I tell business owners that mobile is an expected minimum value proposition, and not because I think you need mobile technology, but because consumers, b2b vendors, d2c consumers, along with other business owners, demand it.

When you add a mobile app to your company’s tech stack, you create a competitive advantage that allows you to earn more customers, increase sales, and make your business more efficient. Here are some additional benefits of having a mobile app for logistics businesses:

~ Get more customers by offering them the convenience of booking consignments and waybills from their phones

~ Increase sales by providing special offers through push notifications directly to a recipient's mobile home screen

~ Improve efficiency by streamlining processes like making appointments and scheduling shipments and deliveries

Get Customized apps according to your business needs

Customized apps are better than generic apps since they are unique to your business and your business processes. The longer I’m in this business (25 years now), the more I see the value of a “custom” vs “generic” approach to business, not just with technology, but with all aspects of a business. Yes, customized solutions cost more money, but they also streamline and create direct and indirect efficiencies which, often times, generate hidden ROI that sometimes can be felt, but not seen.  We often hear employees of apps we’ve developed say things like “I don’t why I like it, but I really like using this app”, or “I can’t measure how much time I’m saving, but I know I’m saving time”.

Final Thoughts

Many people use mobile apps to run their logistics business, but there are still many who don't know or understand the value of what they can provide. If you're one of those people, we hope this post has given you some insight into why it might be worth your time to, at a minimum, have an open conversation about the topic.

At Scottsdale Bizz, we understand the complexities associated with custom development. We also understand that there are pros and cons that come with every project. The global stats are dismal, with only about 17% of all software initiatives ever arriving at the ever-important Apple Store or Google Play marketplace, but at Scottsdale Bizz, we have a 96% launch rate, four times the global average. Why so high?  Because we’ve spent 20+ years developing a six-step strategy, along with our proprietary processes and systems, that ensure success, we have dozen of LORs to back up that claim. To learn more, grab a cup of coffee and chat, or to schedule an online discovery call, contact us at 623-845-2747.

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