If, as Einstein said, the definition of insanity is doing the same thing over and over and expecting a different result, then many businesses are certifiable when it comes to couriers. Perhaps another way of putting it is couriers drive them crazy.
A recent article highlighted problems which come with couriers, including late and missed deliveries, lack of customer service, and being ill-equipped to handle large or unusual packages, which resulted in damaged goods.
Unfortunately, the article didn’t have the space to consider delivery transport solutions which could cure these business’ courier ills. Possibly these businesses are in an awkward stage in-between using ad-hoc deliveries via courier and a more permanent solution.
The main point is, engaging couriers for sporadic or one-off deliveries is fine. But couriers are incredibly limited in the service they can provide. Shifting bulky or delicate items can be a risk, as courier operations are designed to move small parcels.
Many businesses are attracted to couriers due to a perception they are cheap. For businesses with few delivery requirements, this is probably true. But businesses with more frequent delivery demands may be surprised to know that on a cost-per-delivery basis, couriers are an expensive option if the need is regular, urgent or used for large quantities.
Couriers are also often unreliable. Here are some reasons why:
- Couriers often take on other jobs during their route to your destination (unless you’re paying a hefty surcharge for an express service) making delivery times infinitely moveable.
- Some Courier companies use a ‘hub and spoke’ system of delivery which means all goods travel back to their depot once picked up and then go out again in another vehicle to the destination. The result of this could mean greater damages due to more handling, delays and items being misplaced.
For business spending a fortune on couriers, there are smarter solutions. It’s possible to have delivery services using vehicles branded with your business, dedicated driver/s in your uniform, back-up drivers in case of absentees, and employing telematics technology to keep customers informed on their delivery status.
Business with regular delivery demands will find this is available at a rate that is not just competitive with couriers but offers more flexibility and more control over deliveries.
Use of GPS tracking via telematics enables efficient parcel delivery and better customer service, yet most couriers don’t provide this service. Not only does telematics make your customers happier, it saves endless phone calls enquiring about deliveries.
If your courier costs are increasing then might be time to move on, get serious about your deliveries and consider solutions that simultaneously save costs while improving performance. Call us on 1300 808 488 to find out how Ontime can help.