Descartes Route Planner™ software was designed to address the most complex route planning problems and provide fleet operators with capabilities that transform their performance. The solution combines a number of innovations to model and dynamically optimize unique route planning cases, a comprehensive and deep range of capabilities – from delivery appointment scheduling through route execution, to manage the order or pickup process end-to-end and can scale to the largest enterprise requirements. Descartes’ route planning software can not only help improve productivity and customer service, it can help create a differentiated customer experience and help grow revenue.

Planning Innovations

Continuous optimization – unlike batch optimization only solutions, Descartes Route Planner optimization can run all the time, taking in new orders or changes and optimizing them as they occur and constantly looking for new combinations to continue to improve the planning results.

Results scoring to balance business objectives – most business have multiple objectives and the best results are not always “black or white”. Descartes Route Planner “profit-based” approach allows planners to weight the importance of certain objectives over others and balance seemingly competing goals to provide optimal answers that respect real-world conditions and trade-offs.

Robotic process automation – the best planners use multiple steps to create the optimal plan. Descartes Route Planner uses robotic process automation to capture these multi-step processes to consistently provide the best results, minimize planner to planner inconsistency and automatically generate and execute plans.

Artificial intelligence (AI) and machine learning (ML) – AI and ML are dramatically enhancing route optimization performance. Descartes Route Planner uses AI to generate optimizal configurations that uniquely meet planning requirements on a global and local level and ML to increase the accuracy of parameters and individually tune performance down to the driver, customer and road network.

Comprehensive, end-to-end capability

Descartes Route Planner also has rich and deep functionality across the planning and execution processes. It’s ability to model complex pickup and delivery processes, unique product, vehicle, customer, driver and business requirements all companies to move to exception-based planning reduces the number of planners requires, frees planners to focus on continuous improvement opportunities and other tasks that enhance productivity and customer experience.

Descartes Route Planner is the “lynch pin” of the route planning process that starts with delivery appointment scheduling and ends with the order successfully delivered. The solution combines route planning and execution using the advance planning technology in both to intelligently plan and execute deliveries or pickups. When combined with Descartes Reservations™, the dynamic delivery appointment scheduling solution and Descartes Mobile™, the integrated mobile application and wireless messaging network, the solution enables the most sophisticated last-mile delivery processes such as optimized same day delivery

Descartes Route Planner is part of Descartes home/last mile delivery omni-channel platform. The solution has the ability to model and plan multiple delivery channels including their service capabilities to unify the delivery process. Private and dedicated fleets, 3PLs, specialty couriers and gig economy workers can be included as well as various types of distribution and fulfillment centers, including stores. The flexibility of Descartes Route Planner allows third-parties to be used to increase capacity, deliver specific types of products, cover unique geographies and in a number of other scenarios.

Enterprise Scale

From large order volumes to complex organization structures, Descartes Route Planner can enable enterprises of all sizes. As a cloud-based solution, it scales “horizontally” for large order volumes and real-time performance. Even the optimization has been designed with elastic scaling concepts to take bursts of orders and plan them efficiently.

The ability to model complex organization structures is as critical for large enterprises. Descartes Route Planner supports operational structures that best fits their needs with role-based access control to determine who can use what capabilities and data access. In addition, the software can support multi-party delivery processes that support any combination of private and dedicated fleets.

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Best Practices for Last Mile Delivery

In many industries, same-day delivery is a requirement or becoming the new differentiating point. It can, however, be very expensive and not precise. Same-day optimization combines dynamic delivery appointment scheduling with the real-time GPS-based status of vehicles in the field. It allows customers to offer time-definite same-day delivery in the most productive way. Same-day optimization lets fleets take in orders with later cut-off times and provide more dynamic or premium customer service options. Download the eBook to learn more about last mile delivery best practices.

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BFC Solutions
BFC Solutions, the largest self-performing, preventive maintenance service provider for commercial HVAC systems in the U.S., is using Descartes’ dynamic route planning software to meet new demands. By automating route planning and execution for its service operations, the software is helping BFC Solutions to be as responsive as possible to satisfy the needs of customers on a national level.
BC Sands
As a leading supplier of premium building and landscape products in a demanding Australian marketplace, BC Sands required route planning and delivery software that ensured consistent, on-time, in-full (OTIF) delivery. The company used the same-day optimization capabilities of the Descartes solution to automate delivery appointment scheduling, route planning, and proof of delivery (POD) to heighten the customer’s delivery experience, improve operational efficiency, and reduce costs.
Ferrellgas
Through its Blue Rhino operation, Ferrellgas is also the nation’s largest provider of propane by portable tank exchange. With Descartes' dynamic routing solution, managers can see where vehicles are in real time enabling them to make quicker, more cost effective decisions. Ferrellgas improved bottom line results by reducing delivery and administration expenses, more accurate prediction of customer demand and the ability to provide a better customer experience.

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