Door-to-door delivery has proven to be essential to businesses of all sizes in almost every industry. Whether it’s household items, electronics, or important personal documents, fast and efficient point-to-point delivery keeps customers engaged with their trusted companies.
For transparency and accountability, delivery teams use a proof of delivery app (POD apps) for every business transaction. These apps are a form of electronic proof that ensures goods are delivered properly.
What are the essential functions of proof of delivery apps?
Delivery teams usually struggle between different platforms for just a single delivery. They use an app in creating optimal routes, a separate one for maps or GPS, another for a camera to photograph accomplished deliveries, and a different app to capture the receiver’s signature. All these processes can be confusing and time-consuming. Not to mention, it increases the risk of delivery errors.
POD apps solve this problem with three main functions. These features include providing Estimated Time of Arrival (ETAs), capturing photos of deliveries, and recording e-signatures.
First, POD apps provide estimated pick-up dates to ETA to customers to make sure someone will be ready to receive their parcels. Second, the app turns the driver’s phone or device into a medium where customers can electronically sign their names. It is then uploaded real-time into the app’s back-end. These e-signatures are digital proofs that authorized persons officially and directly receive the parcels or documents.
Lastly, POD apps allow the delivery team to capture photos of their successful deliveries. Like e-signatures, these photos are uploaded into the app or sent to the customer, especially when they are not present to receive them. Drivers can leave the parcels safely at the customer’s property and photograph where they placed the package. Clear documentation within a single app reduces miscommunication, liabilities, and unsatisfied customers.
The advantage of integrated PODs
Stand-alone POD apps indeed increase a business’ profitability through time-saving and better customer service. Yet, it works best when integrated into the overall delivery process. Additional functionality within a proof of delivery app means the whole delivery process can be done in one platform in a handy smartphone.
Other essential functions include vehicle tracking, a live map view, instant notifications, no minimum delivery transactions, data importation, and a user-friendly interface.
Real-time vehicle tracking paired with a live map view enables business owners to monitor their delivery teams. This feature is especially useful to food businesses to strategically pack food to deliver them fresh and safe. Customers can stay updated on their deliveries with real-time updates, whether through email, an SMS message, or a link that shows the delivery route in progress. They can plan their days accordingly and be present at the exact time of delivery, avoiding possible loss of parcels.
Some POD apps price according to the number of deliveries or have a minimum number of deliveries in a certain period. Companies should look for apps that are flexible in these terms and support the growth of a business.
There are POD apps that enable users to export data in excel or vice versa. Since the world is shifting towards becoming paperless, this feature helps entrepreneurs monitor their deliveries and make proper decisions henceforth.
A good user interface is not usually seen as essential, but it streamlines the delivery process by making it easier for drivers to understand its features. They will likely make more deliveries in a day when not hindered by confusing platforms. A user-friendly app also reduces the risk of errors in using any of its features.