Small business owner's guide to optimizing courier operations through advanced driver tracking

Updated on February 09, 2024 by Jennifer Collins

driver tracking

Do you want to improve the quality of your courier service? You've arrived at the right location! How things are delivered from online shopping is changing because new technology is helping to monitor delivery drivers.

The worldwide market for courier services will reach a valuation of $400 billion by 2024.

Given the market size, it should come as no surprise that delivery drivers are essential to the courier business. The global delivery fleet is huge. In the US alone, there are more than 13.5 million truck drivers - this is not counting van drivers and small vehicle drivers. Scale this up to the global markets and it will become evident sophisticated driver tracking is the only way that may facilitate and expedite their work.

In this article, we'll discuss:

  • Why advanced driver tracking is excellent for smaller delivery companies
  • Perks of better route planning
  • Track-POD's features that set up these businesses for future success

If you have a small courier business, our tips can simplify things, offer reliable help, and make your vehicles run better. Now is an excellent time to start using new tools that tell you where your drivers are.

The vital role of driver tracking in small courier businesses

If small courier businesses don't use advanced tracking systems, they often miss important information and work less efficiently. Using route management software that enables paperless operations and driver tracking, small businesses increase their operational transparency and can plan better routes, all of which translates into better customer service.

Here are some more examples of how advanced driver tracking benefits small businesses:

  • Enhanced visibility and accountability: With accurate GPS, route managers can watch where their drivers are, their paths, and how long they stop. This means managers can ensure drivers are in the right places during work hours. There's no need to guess where someone is or wait for them to report.
  • Increased customer satisfaction: Customers get alerts when their delivery drivers are getting close so they can be ready to take their packages. Using customer portals, they can also see where the driver is and know exactly when their deliveries will arrive. If there's a delay, customers are told about it right away. All this clear information helps make customers happier with the service.
  • Optimized routes: Tracking vehicles' paths helps find better ways to shorten those trips, avoiding delays and saving time and fuel.
  • Streamlined dispatching: Having precise information about location data lets managers quickly find the closest driver for a new delivery order. This makes deliveries faster and reduces how far drivers need to travel, saving money.
  • Enhanced safety: Tracking driver speed allows setting parameters that trigger alerts for speeding. Managers can coach drivers on safe driving practices. Real-time visibility also adds to driver security.
  • Simplified reporting: Detailed records of stops, routes, traffic delays, and more facilitate generating reports for clients or internal analysis. They no longer rely on manual driver logs.

Small delivery businesses with few tech workers can track drivers using affordable, advanced systems. These systems help them choose the cheapest and fastest routes while providing good service. Combining tracking with planning trips closely makes these advantages even better.

Understanding Track-POD's route planning software

Track-POD is an all-in-one platform for order management, route planning and electronic Proof of Delivery (ePOD) that makes it easier for delivery companies to manage lots of deliveries at once. It helps them plan their routes to make more money and waste less time when their vehicles are not moving.

Track-POD's route planning software is a perfect solution for any small courier business.

The software examines many things for each delivery, like how heavy or oversized the packages are, what kind of vehicle is being used, how much it can carry, the driver's work hours, and how long they stop at each place.

Also, Track-POD lets you see where your drivers are in real time through its tracking feature. You can send routes directly to your drivers' phones and check on the day's work later. This helps you monitor your deliveries and change paths if there's traffic or road construction.

Other key features of Track-POD's advanced tracking solutions include:

  • Real-time GPS location tracking of drivers during their routes
  • Timestamped proof of delivery confirmation and signature capture
  • Customizable route planlning optimized for factors like traffic, priorities, and driver schedules
  • Dispatch management with automated route assignments and progress monitoring
  • Performance metrics on timeliness, miles driven, and other KPIs
  • Custom reporting for analyzing costs, productivity, and customer service

By combining driver tracking and route planning, Track-POD’s software helps courier companies streamline their operations and deliver a 5-star experience to their customers.

Enhancing driver operations with a dedicated driver app

Track-POD’s delivery driver app, voted as one of the best apps of such kind, helps drivers with their day-to-day work. This easy-to-use app has many features that make the driver's job easier:

advanced driver tracking

  • Barcode scanner: drivers can scan barcodes and QR codes on items or orders, making sure they pick up complete orders and deliver them in full and on time.
  • Electronic proof of delivery (ePOD): the app lets drivers take up to 10 pictures for each delivery, so there is clear evidence that an item was delivered. This helps everyone know what condition the goods were in when they arrived.
  • Partial and over-delivery: if there are changes in how much needs to be delivered, the app helps drivers record this correctly and talk easily with dispatchers about these changes.
  • Cash on delivery (COD): this feature lets drivers collect payments during deliveries without any trouble, making things better for customers. 
  • Vehicle safety checklist: before hitting the road, drivers can use the app's checklist to ensure everything is safe with their vehicle. 
  • In-app chat: drivers can message their team directly inside the app if they need help or have questions quickly solving problems together. 
  • Order transfer: sometimes, a driver must pass an order to another person. The app makes this switch smooth, so deliveries can keep going smoothly without wasting resources. 
  • Custom rejection reasons: when something goes wrong with a delivery, a driver can tell dispatchers exactly why using their own words through the app. It helps fix issues faster because dispatchers understand better what happened.

Integration for enhanced tracking

For those who oversee deliveries like dispatchers, all these features come together nicely in one place, allowing them real-time updates on where drivers are and how deliveries are going, including seeing photos as proof of delivery right away. 

These tools mean fewer mistakes; people making decisions have all the information, leading to smoother delivery service.

Implementing advanced driver tracking: a step-by-step guide

Businesses providing delivery services can become much more effective if they used a sophisticated method to keep track of their drivers. Here are some practical steps for small business owners to seamlessly integrate advanced driver tracking into their courier operations:

1. Compare route planning software.

The first step is to compare different route-planning software options available. Some of the key things to consider while comparing are:

  • Usability: software needs to be simple to operate and navigate, it should provide enough flexibility for custom business needs.
  • Real-time tracking: one of the key features - software needs to track drivers and cars in real-time.
  • Route optimization: look for a solution that helps you optimize routes to increase operational efficiency, to save travel time and to manage fuel costs.
  • Connectivity with other business tools: consider the solution’s availability for direct integrations with other solutions, such as ones for inventory management, and customer relationship management, accounting, and project management. 
  • Costs: as a small business, one thing that you may find extremely important is software’s scaling capabilities as you may need more tools when you business grows. Looks for pricing options that adapt to your scaling plans.

2. Choose the right software.

After comparing different software solutions, pick the one that works well for your company and is affordable.

3. Train your drivers.

Teaching your drivers about advanced driver tracking and how it works is important. This will help them learn more about the tech and use it to improve their job.

4. Plan ahead and overcome potential challenges

Some of the potential challenges that you may face while implementing advanced driver tracking are:

  • Resistance from drivers: some drivers may resist the change and avoid new technology. Explain to them how technology can improve their performance and its benefits.
  • Technical issues: there may be technical issues while implementing a new software solution. A technical support team is essential to resolving any problems you may encounter, so make sure the vendor you select is known for excellent customer service.
  • Data privacy concerns: there may be concerns around data privacy and security. Ensuring the software provider has adequate security measures to protect your data is essential. Also, always ask where your data is going to be stored and select a vendor that stores your data in the same geography as where you are located.

Future trends in courier operations

The courier industry rapidly evolves with emerging technologies transforming route planning and driver tracking. Small business owners who stay informed of these innovations will be poised to streamline operations further.

Drone deliveries

Drones are increasingly being used to deliver packages quickly and effectively, especially in cities. McKinsey estimates, that last year, there were over 875,000 drone deliveries worldwide– a big jump of over 80% from before.

Even though not many people currently use drone deliveries, they could change how we send and get packages by making it cheaper and faster. They're also good because they can help keep delivery drivers safe from accidents.

Plus, using drones for delivering things means getting your package more quickly while saving on fuel. Drones make it easier to provide deliveries to places that might be hard to reach otherwise.

Predictive analytics for routing optimization

Advanced analytics and machine learning allow us to optimize routing and predict delivery demands. With this trend, delivery times will be more accurate, fuel costs will be reduced, and operational efficiency will be improved.

Sustainable practices

There is a growing emphasis on environmentally friendly practices in courier operations.

To reduce their carbon footprint, courier companies can adopt the following environmentally friendly practices:

  • Diversification of fleets: Businesses can reduce carbon emissions by combining fuel-efficient, hybrid, and electric vehicles.
  • Eco-conscious packaging: Biodegradable or reusable packaging materials can reduce courier logistics' environmental impact.
  • Local suppliers: By reducing transportation distances, local suppliers can help courier operations reduce their carbon footprint.

Augmented Reality (AR) for last-mile navigation

To improve last-mile navigation, courier operations are integrating augmented reality. AR applications help drivers find the best routes and locate delivery points more efficiently. They also provide real-time information, improving delivery accuracy and customer satisfaction.

A conclusion on boosting small business productivity

Running a small courier business is simpler when you can monitor your drivers. Knowing their location and how much they have traveled helps you make quick, informed decisions. Use Track-POD to watch over your drivers, which saves money and smooths the delivery process.

Using tracking tools, digital delivery confirmations, and good communication helps with being responsible, giving excellent service to customers, and ensuring driver safety.

Small businesses can easily follow the steps to start using advanced tracking systems. In time, artificial intelligence (AI), future predictions in analytics, and new transport tech will work even better together.

Track-POD is user-friendly for monitoring vehicles and choosing the best paths without needing technical skills. With its wide range of services for transportation management, it gives businesses an edge in competition.