If you're afraid of integrating technology into your company, don't worry, we'll give you the keys to success and show you some examples
3 keys to being successful when integrating technology in SMEs

One of the main fears and brakes faced by SMEs in the face of digitalization is Integrate technology. The dichotomy between choosing an all-encompassing solution, or specific solutions for each problem. The benefit of the first option is that you're dealing with a provider, everything is talked about, and you shouldn't have too many problems. The problem is that it probably doesn't solve your processes in the best way and you have to make a lot of effort to adapt your business to the solution. The other option, small experts, usually provide a better solution for each process, but there is a difficulty in getting applications to talk to each other. This means that two companies collaborate, integrate and that can be a challenge.

More complex systems and technological solutions are increasingly required to optimize operations. The trend of one-fits-all (one solution for everything) is increasingly difficult to find and as companies grow they require more specific solutions, so integration projects are becoming more common, but above all, more necessary.

To give great examples, one of Inditex's great successes has been to have a single centralized stock between warehouses and stores, which allows us to have the status of each of the pieces of clothing in real time and achieve greater success in an omnichannel environment where the customer purchases online, is sent from several centers to be consolidated in the store and for the customer to pick up at the store buying an accessory that he found by chance. But something like that is not only available to large companies, SMEs also have a lot to say, and their scale makes them projects much easier, faster and cheaper to implement.

integrar tecnologia en almacen

The benefits of integrating systems are direct improvements in productivity and in the quality of the service they provide, standardized and optimized operating processes, ease in internal processes, reduction of errors and also homogenization of data.

Why is it presented as a brake or challenge, or Why does it bring so many headaches for companies? Mainly because many companies do not have the experience, the resources to develop these projects internally or personnel with the knowledge to lead a project of this type. The solution, outsourcing these projects, and without good advice the project can be a big headache. For this reason, looking for a supplier who knows the business, the tools to be integrated and who has experience in similar projects are the key to success for an integration project to be successful, to develop quickly and on budget.

Unfortunately, sometimes digitalization brings high costs that companies don't want to face because of the doubt if there will really be a return on that investment. Digitalization with common sense, improving and streamlining processes undoubtedly generates great investment returns. For this reason, it is essential that companies have an orchestrator that understands the need of the business, the company's processes and those points that hold back the organization in order to optimize them through digitalization. The partner will actually implement that improvement, but it requires high-level coordination that will be the key to success.

Strategy, knowledge and execution.

Nowadays, execution is the easiest part of all. There are different types of integrations depending on the available systems and the objective. The most used are those of APIS (Application Programming Interface) where data is transmitted from one side to the other quickly and securely. It is the most used since it is simpler to perform and offers great performance. These are used to enter information to our platform. On the other hand, the most used to extract information is integration by Webhooks, in which the external system receives data when there is an event on the platform.

At Routal, we are constantly working to make integrations an opportunity to further streamline company processes, digitize and automate tasks that don't add value, and concentrate the work of employees on those points where a person actually provides the most value.

Quaker State Success Story: Integrating SAP

Quaker State is a leading company in the distribution of oils and lubricants for vehicles in Mexico. In 2020, they needed to standardize their merchandise delivery procedure and homogenize their operations so as not to rely on one or more people for the replacement of personnel. Faced with this situation, they implemented the Routal solution.

Thanks to the Planner intelligent route planner, they were able to unify processes into one, in addition to generating a single procedure that would be available to any worker regardless of their level of training.

Prior to the integration, the delivery routes were carried out manually, they spent hours daily in the planning process, there was little monitoring of the operation, and obtaining any report on performance metrics was an investment of tens of hours, which greatly limited the ability to make improvement decisions.

Once the integration of their SAP system with Routal was implemented, route planning began to be carried out in an automated manner and in minutes. The risk on the figure of the route planner and the dependence on that person was completely reduced. The creation of metric reports was also automated to improve the control and monitoring of their distribution processes, and most importantly: the data were reconciled and validated. Thus, the entire process was standardized and optimized.

Routal Planner is essential to us. It saves us planning time and makes us more competitive against our competitors” Your Manager has your opinion.

Lácteas del Jarama Success Story: Integrating AS 400

Lácteas del Jarama It is one of the most important dairy companies in Spain, it was the first company to introduce mozzarella in our country and its history supports it as one of the main dairy companies in the food service sector.

The successful implementation of Routal was due to the successful integration of its ERP system, an IBM AS400, an extremely robust but difficult to integrate system. To be able to count on a partner like Nakima helped to be able to carry out the integration in just 3 weeks of work and thus reduce the start-up time to just over a month.

The internal leadership clearly identified the need to eliminate steps in the process that would focus logistics personnel on what really provides value: “Deliver quickly, with the lowest cost and offering the best possible service”.

The experience of working with professionals who are experts in this type of project means that companies can think further and want to improve other processes that seemed impossible to improve.

At Routal, we work to streamline integration processes through partners with a lot of experience in all types of technologies and businesses, achieving success so that projects are successful.

Try Routal for free for 10 days click here.

3 keys to being successful when integrating technology in SMEs
Free is usually that word that has magical qualities, since it manages to attract anyone for whatever reason.
You think Google Maps is free, but it ends up being very expensive

Free is usually that word that has magical qualities, since it manages to attract anyone for whatever reason. Who hasn't ever seen a kilometer line of retirees because they were giving away “something”? Something, most likely absurd and useless, but free. And if something is free, we all want them.

The last mile is a process of increasing social relevance, especially considering the enormous growth of e-commerce in recent years.

The importance of the last mile delivery process is given not only by the rise of ecommerce as a more than widespread buying trend, but also because of the complexity that the process itself is gaining due to its success.

Logistics companies struggle to be increasingly outstanding in an increasingly competitive market: satisfactory and fast deliveries, contactless, flexible deliveries or with an efficient reverse logistics policy, among others.

In order to meet all these expectations, logistics companies are required to redesign their last-mile strategy in order to continue in such a changing market. It is therefore essential to consider new ways of proceeding with last-mile delivery, since traditional logistics models have become obsolete, since they will not be commensurate with the current expectations of users.

In this case, the scanning is the key piece of this puzzle, since it will be what will allow companies to keep up to date within the sector.

But is it possible to digitalize the last-mile process successfully and for free?

Google Maps vs. specialized last-mile software

Free tools, such as Google Maps, can be very useful on a daily basis as a support method for moving to certain locations, planning trips abroad or even organizing specific routes. But is it possible to use this tool as a last-mile delivery planner? Our opinion is categorical: no.

The limitations of free tools such as Google Maps are numerous. As mentioned before, the last-mile delivery process is far from simple, in fact, in recent years it has become an increasingly complex and professional process (all due to its success in terms of market buying trends).

Therefore, delegating such complex and important processes as route planning and optimization to tools that are not specialized in this regard is a big mistake. In the case of Google Maps, many of the above-mentioned needs cannot be met, such as exhaustive route optimization, direct communication with customers, real-time monitoring of operations or even delivery tests, among others.

Consequently, we must bear in mind that in order to be logistically successful, we must rely on specialized last-mile software. In the article The 5 features you should look for in a last-mile management software”, we tell you in detail everything you should look for in specialized software.

Where two fit, three fit

Greed is known as a cardinal sin, but can it really be considered as such if we speak in logistical terms?

As mentioned before, the logistics industry is very competitive and staying firm in it can be really difficult. For this reason, professional excellence must be sought and, in concrete terms such as last-mile deliveries, even more so.

Incorporating specialized software for the last mile for the organization and favorable course of our daily operations is essential. In addition, it is also interesting to consider the facilities provided by tools such as Google Maps (and not only because they incorporate the magic word: “free”); in the specific case of the Google tool, it will directly help in making deliveries, as a route guide for them.

At this point, why not consider working with both tools and simultaneously? This is possible, since some of the most developed route planning software on the market incorporate Google Maps as part of their services.

In short, incorporating a specialized route planner and having it connected to tools such as Google Maps will guarantee success.

See for yourself all the advantages of incorporating specialized software that also has Google Maps, such as SmartMonkey Planner. Plus, if you sign up now, you'll get a free trial period (for a limited time only).

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You think Google Maps is free, but it ends up being very expensive
Failed deliveries are the Achilles' heel of any company offering last-mile delivery services, and it's even the main problem.
The secret to reducing failed deliveries

Las failed deliveries They are the Achilles' heel of any company that offers last-mile delivery services and is even the main problem of companies that rely on logistics for the development of their commercial activity.

Logistic activities present great challenges but, without a doubt, the biggest of them all are failed deliveries. It is estimated that more than 1 in 10 deliveries are unsuccessful due, for the most part, to communication problems between customers and the delivery company.

Some of the most common situations in which failed deliveries occur and the origin of customer-company communication problems, according to the portal Eurosender are the absence of the recipient at the time of delivery, an incomplete or incorrect address or, even, problems accessing the recipient are some of the most common causes, among others.

The failed deliveries of Marcos, Silvia and César: a story of overcoming

As mentioned before, failed deliveries are a major challenge for many companies, not only those that focus their activities on the last mile but also for many others that rely on logistics for the success of their business.

Below we tell you the story of Marcos, Silvia and César. Three short stories that show the impact of failed deliveries on their daily activities and how they have been able to overcome them.

Marcos is a first-class chef

Marcos is the owner and chef of a centrally located restaurant in Madrid. Marcos is also responsible for making the inventory and receiving the daily merchandise for its elaborations. However, he also suffers from failed deliveries, since he told us that he had to change many dishes from his daily menu beforehand because the merchandise arrived late and without prior notice. This forced him to redo the menu at the last minute and adapt in record time, which has made him a first-class chef. Now, thanks to better planning and communication with their suppliers, their failed deliveries have been reduced by 97%.

Silvia's round numbers

Silvia is in charge of the logistics area of her company ecommerce, specialized in the last mile delivery of organic products. Before the incorporation of Silvia, her company had a 19% failed delivery rate, a very high cost for a small family business. As soon as Silvia joined the company, she could see the great challenge she was facing and looked for the main reasons why there were so many failed deliveries over the course of a single day and these were, in short, problems in communication between customer and delivery person. Now, Silvia has round the numbers, as the rate of failed deliveries has fallen to less than 4%.

César's customer satisfaction

Over the years, César has suffered from poor reviews about his company from customers who were dissatisfied with the services he offered. César had to find out what was the problem that most of his clients were facing and try to solve it quickly, in order to avoid the debacle of his company's image on the Internet. Over time, he was able to identify that he had communication problems with his customers, since they complained of not being notified when the service was performed (despite being carried out) or even of not having photographic evidence to verify that the service was being performed. César solved the problem as soon as he detected the problem and now has a better reputation and a score of 4.4 out of 5 in his company.

Marcos, Silvia, César and yours's solution for failed deliveries

As you can see, failed deliveries are a pending issue in many companies. A highly complex challenge within the logistics chain that leads us to prioritize knowing what its possible errors are and how to solve them. But what then is the solution? As any marriage therapist would also tell you... COMMUNICATION.

The stories of Marcos, Silvia and César are real stories of our clients who have sent us over the years and as a sign of gratitude.

Not having direct and effective communication with your customers and even with the drivers and delivery people themselves is one of the biggest mistakes in logistics.

Being able to enjoy direct and inattentive communication channels that allow customers to know when they will receive a package, to verify that a service has been carried out or what phase of operation it is in is key to effective deliveries and also to the satisfaction of all parties.

The transparency and effectiveness of the entire process is very important and both Marcos, Silvia and César know this. All of them were able to identify the problem their business had and found it in Routal Planner the solution. They saw Planner not only as an optimizer of delivery routes, but also as a platform for direct communication with their customers. Now all your customers have Information updated in real time in addition to also having delivery tests for the verification of the performance of the services.

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Learn about other effective methods to combat failed deliveries in our article “Optimize delivery management with proactive monitoring”.

The secret to reducing failed deliveries
It is essential to incorporate proactive monitoring into our operations to carry out services in a satisfactory manner.
Optimize delivery management with proactive monitoring

La delivery management It is one of the most important and important parts of any logistics company and, therefore, it is essential to incorporate the proactive monitoring in our operations, in order to carry out the provision of services in a satisfactory manner.

El Rise of online commerce, especially after the pandemic, is further evidence of the paradigm shift in terms of the purchasing habits of the vast majority of consumers, since a new scenario is being proposed where the great advantages of ecommerce, such as the convenience of shopping anywhere or the possibility of buying products and prices.

Taking into account that this e-commerce model is here to stay and will most likely grow and innovate in the coming years, it is essential to ensure optimal management of logistics resources in order to offer efficient and satisfactory delivery management for customers.

In this regard, organization, efficiency and, especially, the ease of adaptation in deliveries are key factors in achieving fast and optimal deliveries. All of this will contribute greatly to the satisfaction of our customers and, therefore, to the good image of our company.

For all these reasons and given the importance of managing deliveries, today many companies have chosen to implement specialized software in the last mile to carry out the operation of deliveries in an efficient manner. The incorporation of specialized tools for last-mile management in logistics companies is the solution to many of the inconveniences that may arise, such as poor planning in deliveries or keeping an exhaustive monitoring of operations in order to carry out a more productive and satisfactory delivery.

Proactive monitoring

As stated before, delivery management is already a determining factor in the proper functioning of any logistics company and the implementation of tools to help us manage it is becoming increasingly important.

In this regard, it is important to take into account concepts such as proactive monitoring.

What is proactive monitoring?

La proactive monitoring It is the live monitoring of the daily planning of services and deliveries that warns of possible failures and errors while allowing us to react and adapt operations in a satisfactory manner.

What should good proactive monitoring look like?

Precisely, adequate proactive monitoring must have sufficient tools and functionalities that allow our operations to react favorably in time.

In this way, it is essential that Let's incorporate delivery management tools that have proactive monitoring and that it be comprehensive enough.

To keep in mind, good monitoring must have the possibility of carrying out the Real-time monitoring of operations: to be able to view at any time and live what the operation is going on.

In addition, and in relation to the real-time monitoring of operations, it is essential that it incorporates sufficient functions that allow a timely reaction to possible failures or errors. For example, it's important to consider the possibility of change in the order of stops or services. In the event of an unforeseen event and we must give priority to one stop over the rest, it will be essential that we have the right tool that allows us to make this change easily.

On the other hand, it is also important in terms of proactive monitoring, that our delivery management software also has the possibility of being able to carry out a change in the assignment of services between one driver and another. For example, thanks to the live view, we can see how one of our drivers must deviate from the route and there is one stop waiting to be made: in this case, we can easily change the assignment of that stop from one driver to another, so that said stop or service can be performed correctly.

Proactive monitoring is also very important when it comes to our customers. Thanks to being able to carry out an exhaustive and live monitoring of the operation, it will be possible to give our customers timely notice of, for example, a delay, which will have allowed them to react and then be able to perform the service efficiently.

All of these features and functions of proactive monitoring are essential, but it is also important to consider the magnitude of the operation and how stressful it can be. Therefore, it is also important to keep in mind that proactive monitoring can be done in a way comfortable and friendly: to be able to know what is happening on a single screen and without having to press the different Inputs on a consistent basis.

To do this, we must incorporate a tool that allows proactive monitoring to be possible and complete but, in addition, that it is independent and that we only have to have the screen open without having to be constantly aware, but simply to see sideways that everything is going as planned or that some of the routes are having unexpected behavior. That's when we'll need to pay attention and identify how to solve the problem.

Differences between proactive and reactive monitoring

Although it is true that more and more companies are betting on continuous improvement and are incorporating mechanisms such as monitoring given their great benefits, there are still laggards that are left behind doing reactive monitoring, a way of proceeding that is currently obsolete.

By proactively monitoring, we can move forward to potential problems. An informed customer at all times allows us to act quickly in the face of any incident, offering solutions proactively, such as arriving later than expected. Being proactive allows us to move forward to possible problems that may arise and not only to avoid them, but also to think about customer satisfaction by offering solutions and alternatives, which they will undoubtedly value very positively.

On the other hand, reactive monitoring does not contemplate possible problems that may arise. It only takes them into account once they have occurred, usually when the wait is longer than usual. At that point, it's too late to provide a satisfactory solution to the customer.

The usual case, when a customer makes the decision to call. This situation is usually due to the lack of information and visibility to the customer, which does not allow them to adapt their daily lives to the operational one. This situation creates stress and uncertainty for the client. The call is a sign that any changes we make to meet that customer's demand will generate extra delays for the rest and not only that, the added pressure for drivers.

With SmartMonkey Planner you can enjoy all the advantages of being able to carry out proactive monitoring, since it is a software specialized in last mile management that has a multitude of functions so that you can easily monitor and adapt your operations at any time.

If you want to position yourself ahead of your competitors, join Planner. In addition, you can sign up now without obligation, we have a free 10-day trial period.

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Do you want to know if you make some of the most common mistakes in the last mile and how to fix them? Go to our article The 4 mistakes to avoid in the last mile and we explain it to you.

Optimize delivery management with proactive monitoring
On November 26th, in exactly 10 days, a new edition of Black Friday will be held.
Prepare your logistics for Black Friday in less than 2 weeks

On November 26th, in exactly 10 days, a new edition of the Black Friday.

El Black Friday or Black Fridayor is it a commercial event of American origin that is held every year for a day: always on the last Friday of the month of November.

On the occasion of the opening of the Christmas shopping season, great discounts and offers are offered throughout Black Friday in large and small stores, both electronic and traditional.

Black Friday and the Last Mile

Given the enormous impact of this “Black Friday”, a large part of businesses are positively affected on this day, especially e-commerce. According to studies shown in Lobocom,”E-commerce companies increase their turnover by 35% on average during the week of Black Friday”. In addition, the fact about the comparison with Christmas shopping also stands out, “since The benefits may even exceed the Christmas campaign”.

In this regard, it should be noted that the month of November is the month of the year with the highest number of sales, thus surpassing the hitherto unbeatable months of December (Christmas campaign) or January (sales campaign).

In this way, and taking into account the great benefits and business repercussions of this important date, it is essential to formulate a strategy prior to Black Friday, in order to guarantee success in our company.

Preliminary market study

As we mentioned before, a prior approach is essential in addition to creating a strategy focused on Black Friday. Here are some of the key aspects you should consider when carrying out a previous study:

· Knowledge of market trends: know what the dynamics of the market are in terms of purchasing patterns, products or services most in demand or, even, purchase method (in-store pickup, home delivery, etc.), among others. Knowledge of all or some of these trends will help us to establish a more precise and, consequently, more beneficial strategy.

· Analysis of our consumers: in relation to market trends, it is also essential to know our own users or potential customers in depth. Knowing what they want, what they need and how they want to achieve it will provide us with a lot of information to direct a focused and efficient strategy.

· Black Friday marketing strategy: knowing the market and our potential consumers will help us to implement a marketing strategy focused solely and exclusively on Black Friday. Strategies such as email marketing campaigns in the previous days, publications on social networks or even banners and pop-ups within the website itself may be considered.

How to prepare your logistics last mile for a successful Black Friday

Given the enormous success of this “Black Friday” and the great impact on sales in practically all the stores participating in this “black day”, it is essential to establish a logistical preparation prior to this day.

For users, it is increasingly important to speed and efficiency in your purchases. Make a quick and convenient purchase: from anywhere (at home or from the beach) and receive it in the shortest possible time. This entire process is one of the most important aspects for users and one of the most difficult logistically for any company.

For this reason, implementing tools that facilitate logistics operations and, above all, help to efficiently manage delivery routes is vital on such a special date.

Here's how you should prepare for Black Friday in your store:

· Using specialized software in the last mile: the implementation of tools on such an important date as Black Friday will be a fundamental part of your company's commercial success. Tools such as SmartMonkey Planner they will help you to cope with this frenetic sales day in addition to Increase profits, because with Planner you'll plan routes in an intelligent way: the program itself will result in the fastest and most efficient routes in a matter of seconds. With efficient routes, you will not only have economic savings, due to lower fuel consumption, but also time savings, since you will carry out the most optimal route.

· Direct communication channels with your customers: direct communication with users is essential, since in the midst of the digital age, we are used to being constantly connected and informed. With the use of software such as Planner, your customers will be able to receive direct and real-time information about your purchases. For example, your customers will be able to know at all times where their order is or when they will receive it, among others.

· Transportation: given the enormous sales forecast on this date, it is necessary to take into account the company's logistics and transport capabilities. If, as we mentioned before, the increase in sales is greater than 35% compared to other days, we must weigh what the transport needs will be in order to operate successfully. To reach the total of the operation, you must Increase transport of the same exponentially: increasing one third of available transport, at least 10% if sales exceed 35%.

· Logistic staff: in the same way as with transport, it will be necessary increase specialized logistics staff to be able to carry out the day in a satisfactory manner. Taking into account that the increase in sales will be 35%, the available logistics staff must increase by the same number or, at least 10% less. Therefore, the workforce should increase by 25%-35% for that day.

But there are 10 days left, am I still on time?

Of course! One of our greatest achievements at SmartMonkey is, precisely, having launched it to the market the most user-friendly last-mile management tool on the market. In fact, a recent case is that of the Portuguese company Prio, a company that has been able to start optimizing production routes with literally 1 meeting and a 20-minute demonstration.

Don't be less, and do like Prio. Try Planner and start enjoying all the benefits.

Create a schedule in a few minutes with this step-by-step

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Do you want to know more about Black Friday and what are the forecasts for the 2021 edition? Go to our article Black Friday: 50 days until the biggest logistics challenge of the year and find out.

Prepare your logistics for Black Friday in less than 2 weeks
The trend towards digitalization has brought with it new forms of purchase for users, thus giving rise to e-commerce.
Ecommerce: everything you need to know about buying and selling online

The trend towards digitalization has brought new forms of purchase among users, thus giving rise to Ecommerce.

El e-commerce or Ecommerce is defined as the purchase and sale of products or services over the internet.

Currently, the relationship between Logistics and the Ecommerce has become so important that the first has become one of the fundamental pillars of the second, since the logistics industry is indispensable for the success of ecommerce. For this reason, for companies that focus their business activity on Internet sales, logistics is one of the most careful processes, since the satisfaction of their customers and the shopping experience will depend on it, especially on last mile.

Advantages of Ecommerce

Below, we show you what are the main advantages of implementing a ecommerce compared to a traditional business with the help of the specialized blog Ecommerce News:

  • No geographical limitations
  • wider range of products and services
  • Reducing costs
  • Greater ease of purchase for users in addition to a saving in time spent on the purchase
  • Easier to develop marketing strategies
  • Increased transparency and information for customers
  • Possibility to offer a comparison of products with respect to their prices and characteristics
  • No time limit

Ecommerce and the Last Mile

La Last mile corresponds to the final stage of the delivery of the order. It is one of the steps that increase logistics costs the most, due to factors such as traffic, urban limitations or inefficient routes in daily deliveries (which will later result in delays in orders, among others).

How to optimize the management of the last mile?

  • Establish strategies in the delivery conditions: use collection points after failed deliveries, direct communication with the user about the status of the package, etc. Also, with regard to transportation, grouping orders by area or the use of light vehicles with better urban mobility.
  • Use transportation route management software: optimize the routes that are going to be taken in the distribution of packages so that they are as efficient as possible. With this, we will achieve not only a significant reduction in fuel costs, but also a reduction in the time spent on routes and, consequently, an increase in profits. In addition, optimizing routes will make your company a much more sustainable company.

With SmartMonkey Planner you can enjoy all the advantages offered by a ecommerce thanks to our advanced software, which allows you to establish direct communication with your customers, have traceability of deliveries, optimize routes, and much more!

Try it for free!

Do you want to know what are the 5 key tools for an ecommerce? Go to our article Ecommerce: 5 essential tools to survive in 2021 and find out.

Ecommerce: everything you need to know about buying and selling online
Reverse logistics as the set of practices and processes responsible for managing the returns of products purchased by users.
Reverse Logistics: what it is and what are its benefits

In general terms, it could be said that logistics is the set of all those processes necessary for a product or service to reach the end user; it mainly covers transport, storage and distribution operations.

In turn, and due to the constant change in processes and ways of doing things, largely due to technological advances, different modalities in processes coexist, such as reverse logistics.

La reverse logistics It is a very broad concept that can encompass a myriad of activities since, for example, some of them have ecological purposes (with the objective of avoiding harm to the environment) or others for commercial or productive purposes only, since their actions are interconnected to market supply.

So... What is Reverse Logistics?

With the rise of the already known ecommerce, logistics processes have been forced to adapt and update themselves to new trends and market processes in order to maintain competitiveness vis-a-vis other companies. One of the aspects in which logistics has had to adapt the most due to these b2c stores is, precisely, in the logistics of returns or returns (those users who have purchased an item online and want to return it directly).

In this way, reverse logistics can be defined as the set of practices and processes responsible for managing the returns and returns of those products purchased by users. These returns or returns are managed from the points of sale of the products to the manufacturer itself (to carry out the repair, recycling or disposal of the product at the lowest possible cost).

In addition, logistics is already another process and of vital importance when planning the supply chain for the satisfaction of the end customer.

What are the differences between regular logistics and reverse logistics?

The infrastructure required to manage reverse logistics processes is, as a general rule, the same as for any other logistics process in use. However, we can find differences both in its planning and in its monitoring: the operation is different, since now the customer is the one who can act as a “warehouse” and wait for the collection of their product for subsequent evaluation and economic compensation. In this way, new adapted processes must be considered and taken into account, such as the user's pickup or the treatment of the return product.

Types of Reverse Logistics

According to the article on Reverse Logistics From the company Imatica, specialized in IT services and management software, two types of reverse logistics can be differentiated due to the difference in their approach or objectives.

Business: consists of managing the returns that customers make to inventories or manufacturers.

Eco-friendly: one of the priorities of reverse logistics is precisely the reduction of the environmental impact caused by business activities. For this reason, its use for waste treatment, such as recycling, is also very popular (discarded objects are grouped together for their subsequent recovery process to promote their use).

Benefits of Reverse Logistics

The benefits of reverse logistics are diverse, since they can have both an impact on a better corporate image of the company as well as contributing to a cost reduction. In addition, it is also necessary to highlight the enormous environmental benefit in ecological reverse logistics thanks to practices such as recycling.

Economically, this type of logistics can be significantly beneficial since it is reduced both in time and in costs because there is no need to invest in new materials in the production chain.

Also, and taking into account the typology, “ecological inverted logistics” promotes environmental protection as long as practices such as recycling are carried out (raw materials are created from waste, thus generating a second life cycle for products). All of this also contributes to the improvement of the company's corporate image, since all actions that take advantage of sustainability are increasingly recognized and better valued.

For all these reasons, reverse logistics must be increasingly optimal and efficient, since the management capacity that any company has to manage services such as product returns or customer returns will determine its business success.

As with traditional logistics and last-mile delivery services, reverse logistics also requires tailored planning and optimization, since the user's requirements will be the same: a satisfactory experience both in terms of quality and economy with timely collections and quick returns.

In order to plan reverse logistics that meets the needs of users, it is essential to adopt a last mile management software that allows the efficiency and optimization of all the resources available in your company.

With Routal Planner you will get specialized software that can carry out the different operations that involve reverse logistics, such as the collection and return of products, thanks to optimal planning of the process and with real-time monitoring of its development. Below, we show you a short video in which we show you how to carry out this type of operation in a simple and, above all, efficient way thanks to the use of Planner.

Reverse Logistics: what it is and what are its benefits
Story about Sant Jordi, home delivery and how to combat coronavirus
Success stories
Sant Jordi, day of the book, the rose and the delivery

Sant Jordi is always a special day, books, roses, queues and people, lots of people. Everyone is out on the street, enjoying a magical day for both children and adults. It is the day of the year when the most books are sold, 7.5% of annual sales In the city of Barcelona.

DSC 9369

This year will be special. We'll have to spend it at home, enjoying a good read, our recommendation for these days The Black Swan by Nassim Taleb. This year we will save ourselves the hassle of Las Ramblas and we will have to buy the roses online. Without a doubt, a special year.

We want to take advantage of this important date to see the success of initiatives that, in a normal year, would hardly have achieved such overwhelming success.

One of our customers is using Highway as a tool to optimize the distribution of roses on such a special date as Sant Jordi.


Thanks to the power of the Highway route planner, they have been able to grow in deliveries and reach customers that would have been impossible for them before.

Like them, hundreds of other customers are entering a world such as home delivery. A channel that had often been completely forgotten. Thanks, or unfortunately, COVID-19 has forced the launch of new marketing channels such as Ecommerce and its own distribution and home delivery.

We are seeing this in our traditional customers, distribution companies to the HORECA channel that are converting to home distributors overnight.

Pastry shops such as Cropics they were able to deliver all the Easter monkeys in record time and have the detail of leaving a monkey at my wife's grandmother's house 😁. These types of details make being able to help small businesses make you proud of the work you do and of seeing how you can help more people around you.

repartidor roses sant jordi a casa

We are in a very difficult time for many companies and families. There is little help to get through this crisis and reaching those people we can help is always a challenge. I encourage you to share our story, the story of our users and customers, companies that are embarking on a new adventure, delivery. Without experience, without processes, but with a desire to fight and face the corona, you are not alone.

We won this together.

Sant Jordi, day of the book, the rose and the delivery
On-demand distribution is an industry that is growing at a very high speed. New companies appear every day, especially in the market of
Intelligent Dispatch for On-Demand Distribution

The distribution on demand is an industry that is growing at a very high speed. New companies appear every day, especially in the market for food, beverages and deliveries of perishable products. And the competition is wild. Efficiency is a key metric in the “I want it all and I want it now” era and the most critical part is what happens from when a new order is placed until it is delivered.

Today I want to focus on the problem of sending new orders, that is, how to decide which courier service the order should be assigned to when an order enters the system. This is because the dispatch today is not addressed systematically. Optimizing the dispatch system can minimize delivery time and improve customer satisfaction.

The operating paradigm of companies that deliver on demand can be divided into two different types:

  1. Operations based on a single warehouse are those operations focused on a single tank. This warehouse has several dealers and the programming is done once to obtain an order list; usually grouping orders by area. Amazon Prime is a good example of this paradigm.
  2. Operations based on multiple warehouses are those operations that rely on choosing the order in one of the multiple warehouses and delivering it to a customer. In this case, the delivery people are scattered around the city, and once a new order arrives, it is assigned through a shipping process to one of the multiple delivery people. Companies such as Uber, Just Eat, Delivero, etc. operate this way.

The problem of dispatching is solved more or less satisfactorily in the first scenario thanks to the possibility of linking together a list of deliveries and considering it as a Traveling Seller Problem (Traveling Salesman Problem) with some pre-clustering restrictions (OK, I know that TSP is an expensive problem, but... come on, it's about Amazon).

On the contrary, in the second scenario, it is not so clear that the problem is being optimally addressed. How can a new incoming order be added to a running scenario? There are tons of variables to consider:

  • Can the courier make multiple collections before starting to deliver?
  • Can an already assigned order be reassigned to another courier service?
  • Do all orders have the same priority? (for example, all orders must be delivered no later than 30 minutes after placing them)
    Do orders need to be delivered by a particular vehicle?
  • ...
Photo by Roman Mager/Unsplash

Modeling this scenario can be quite challenging, and that's why SmartMonkey has been working on this problem for a while. We call our solution Online Programming Optimization Model (OSOM) (Yes, branding isn't one of our strengths 😅, but phonetically it sounds like “incredible” and that's pretty fun). OSOM can model business restrictions and find a feasible solution to the dispatching problem.

In the simulation below, we have modeled a world where:

  • A courier service can be assigned multiple pickups and deliveries at the same time
  • and the first next service of each messaging service is fixed and cannot be reassigned in subsequent iterations.

The visualization contains twenty iterations of the world divided into two steps:

1. New incoming services are marked in gray.

2. Services are dynamically assigned to deliverers to optimize overall delivery time.

Intelligent Dispatch for On-Demand Distribution