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How to provide accurate estimated time of delivery

Pro Delivery Manager has the ability to calculate the estimated time of delivery for every delivery. This information can be provided to the customer via the delivery tracking link or accessed by the branch when viewing any delivery. Estimated delivery times are only shown to the customer if this option is enabled - see "Settings" > "Deliveries" > "Tracking link" in the PDM admin system.

In order to ensure that estimated times are accurate, it is important to note the following information.

How estimated delivery times are calculated

The estimated time of delivery is calculated upon request. This means that the estimated time is calculated when a customer accesses delivery tracking information via a tracking link or the branch clicks on the 'Update' link (next to 'Latest estimate') when viewing a delivery in the PDM admin system.

In order to calculate the expected time of delivery, PDM checks the last known location of the courier. If this information is not available (or is not very recent), PDM will look up the time and location of the last delivery completed by the courier. Providing one of these pieces of information is available, PDM will use this as the starting location and point in time.

PDM next requests the optimal route (via the Google Directions service) between the starting location to the delivery in question, via any other deliveries in the sequence between. If the Google Directions service is able to provide a valid route, the estimated time for the journey is used as a basis to estimate the delivery time. Any deliveries in sequence are taken into consideration by adding time on for completing each of these.

How to ensure accurate estimates

Bearing in mind the above information, the following actions should be taken in order to provide the most accurate estimates possible.

1) Ensure that tracking is enabled for the courier. See "Settings" > "App Users" in the PDM admin system (this ensures that the current location of the courier is available throughout the delivery run).

2) Ensure that Location Services are enabled on the device used by your courier.

3) Ensure that a mobile data connection is available and enabled on the device used by your courier (this ensures that the current location of the courier and delivery sequence and status is uploaded to the server).

4) Ensure that the "Average time per delivery" is set correctly for your courier. See Settings" > "App Users" in the PDM admin system. This is the amount of time added for each delivery in sequence, so needs to be as accurate as possible. You may need to experiment with this setting.

5) Check that the "travel mode" of your courier is set correctly. There are options for Driving, Bicycling and Walking (each uses different routes and will provide different journey times). See "Settings" > "App Users" in the PDM admin system.

6) Train your courier to follow the sequence of deliveries shown in the PDM mobile app. If the courier deviates from the delivery sequence, any delivery estimates previously provided will likely be inaccurate. NOTE: If the courier does deviate, and "fully optimised" routing is enabled for the courier (see "Settings" > "App Users" in the PDM admin system), the PDM app will automatically re-sequence the remaining deliveries, enabling future delivery estimates for these deliveries to be calculated accurately.

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