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How to Choose a Proof of Delivery System: Four Critical Considerations

How to Choose a Proof of Delivery System: Four Critical Considerations

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How to Choose a Proof of Delivery System: Four Critical Considerations

May 20, 2021

Manog Tseung
Person signing for a delivery

So, you’ve decided to buy a proof of delivery system.

That’s the hard part—making that decision to go all in. And no need to worry—this is an exciting time and the results you’re hoping for are just around the corner.

The next step in your journey: selecting the right electronic proof of delivery (ePOD) system.

You want a solution that fulfills your business objectives. That satisfies the needs and concerns of stakeholders across your organization. And one that’s easy to use.

There are hundreds of solutions out there, and each ePOD provider promotes a huge variety of features and benefits. So, how do you know what’s right for you?

Using more than 30 years of experience in helping operations like yours address their transportation challenges, we’ve put together a checklist of four critical elements to consider when choosing a proof of delivery system.

1. Make Sure It’s Easy for You and Your Staff to Use

Whether it’s the mobile application that your drivers will use, or the desktop management portal that your office-based staff will access—it’s important to ensure that each aspect of the system has a user-friendly and intuitive interface. As well as making life easier for your staff, this will also ensure speedy ROI by reducing the need for lengthy training and the risk of slow adoption.

The obvious next step is to request a demo. But make sure you’re considering the varied needs of those who will be using the system. When thinking about drivers, you’ll want to be sure that the mobile app presents them with easy, step-by-step processes, communicated in a user-friendly format—all while emphasizing the fact that the software was made to make their daily tasks easier. Ease of comprehension and use is particularly important if you are sub-contracting out deliveries.

Office-based staff have different concerns. You’ll be looking for an intuitive desktop application that can provide relevant information to a variety of users quickly and easily. For example, you may prefer operational staff to receive exception alerts rather than review all the incoming data in search of problems. Or managers across the business might want to access data for strategic analysis in a format that suits them.

2. Look for a Flexible and Configurable System

Every organization has different operational processes, and no-one knows your business protocols better than you. It’s crucial to choose a solution that allows you to easily tailor workflows, data-capture requirements and even terminology to suit your operation. When the software flexes to fit your business, rather than forcing operational changes to suit the software, your staff are far more likely to trust, welcome and fully utilize the new technology.

Rather than offering a rigid set of data-capture options, Aptean Proof of Delivery software provides the ability to create bespoke workflows and electronic forms—like vehicle checklists and risk assessments—to suit your unique operation.

Your business changes all the time. When assessing prospective solutions, ask vendors if and how you’ll be able to change processes in response to evolving customer demands, changing regulations, industry trends or new business objectives.

3. Check That There’s an Established Implementation Process

You don’t need to be an IT expert, but you do need to understand exactly what’s involved in terms of implementing your proof of delivery system. How long will the implementation take? Who needs to be involved? What levels of support and training are on offer from the vendor? And what is required of your team before go-live is possible?

Your next set of questions should be focused on integration. The system(s) the ePOD solution needs to integrate with will depend on your specific business and objectives. For example, you may need to provide your finance department with completed job data for invoicing or give your warehouse teams visibility of stock at an item level of detail.

You should ensure that the software vendor you choose provides a set of standard integration methods, with clear documentation and established support processes to help your implementation run smoothly.

Unlike many complicated, time-consuming software projects, implementing a proof of delivery solution should be a simple process.

4. Choose the Right Partner

Obviously, you’re taking care to choose the right software, but selecting the right partner is just as important.

Don’t be afraid to ask for references from existing customers who can talk to you about their experience with a vendor’s solution and, more importantly, their experience with the support team. How long has the customer used the solution? What’s the response time and resolution rate when there is a problem? It’s only natural that there will be. Getting to know the supplier will ensure you choose a partner that continues to support your business as it grows.

You’ll also want to consider how focused the prospective proof of delivery system vendors are on excellence in this field. Best-of-breed providers have a clear mission to maintain and develop their proof of delivery product. Other, one-stop-shop providers of transportation management systems that serve every step of the supply chain, may not have the resources to make sure their proof of delivery systems stay current.

You’ll want to ask vendors if the product is still in active development and keeps up with industry changes. You’ll also want to know what research and development resources are dedicated specifically to this functionality. Doing so will ensure the product continues to grow alongside your business and can help you solve future transportation challenges.

Researching and choosing a proof of delivery system doesn’t have to be difficult. But you should embark on the journey with a good sense of where you’re going - and how you’re going to get there. Then, you can more easily evaluate whether each solution – and supplier – meets your criteria.

Are you ready to find your perfect match? Find out how, now.

Tell us about yourself and an Aptean specialist will be in touch.