There is a continuing move towards home based working in most advanced economies with the UK being at the vanguard of the change. In the UK, according to the Office of National Statistics, 13.9% of the work force is currently partly or fully home based, amounting to 4.2m workers.
Many of these individuals are employed by major firms as part of their field based work-force usually in customer oriented roles such as maintenance, installation, support or sales. These employees are at the front-line of customer interactions and their efficiency is critical to a firm’s performance both financially and, crucially, in customer relationships.
Firms invest heavily in their field based operations and there has been a notable trend in investing to enhance work-force productivity through better scheduling, activity monitoring and training. Yet, despite all these efforts, many companies still have a major inefficiency in how they get products, parts, samples, etc. to their field workforces.
Field based workers invariably need access to goods; either spare parts, tools or products and businesses have a supply chain geared to getting those goods to their people. The typical supply-chain involves transporting those goods through a warehouse to locations which, inadvertently are particularly inconvenient to their workforce. This inconvenience is born out of need as most Businesses do not trust home delivery to employees, due to the unpredictability and uncertainty of the service. Therefore, they use regional depots, locker-banks or local post offices. With the result that their workers travel on a daily or weekly basis to collect the goods they need.
Home delivery has not been trusted by businesses for all the reasons that consumers are so dissatisfied with home delivery. Standard delivery services are unreliable and many deliveries are left with neighbours, abandoned on the doorstep or hidden behind the wheelie bin. Most businesses need significantly more reliability and security than this. Premium delivery services cost extra and typically still need the recipient to be home when the delivery is made. Field based workers are paid to be with customers and waiting for parcels is costly and unproductive.
As home delivery is not a viable option, businesses fall back on solutions that get deliveries close to their employees and then have those individuals travel to make the final pick-up. Businesses typically use a mix of depots, locker banks and the Post Office network. The distance and time travelled by each employee is dictated by the density of the network of delivery points and the convenience of their locations. In urban areas the network density is often high but so is the travel congestion, whereas in rural areas collection points maybe a long way away from each employee. The result is the same, the collection by the employee takes time and, as we all know, time is money or in many cases, less customers served in a day.
In the perfect world, all goods would be delivered to exactly where they are needed for when they are needed. In a field work-force scenario, goods should be delivered to an employee’s home. If this happened, no time would be wasted on travelling to pick-up goods and time with customers would be maximised. Furthermore, investment in capitally or operationally expensive collection points would be avoided.
Pelipod is making this perfect world possible.
Pelipod is the worlds most advanced, point-located, connected parcel delivery and returns box. Pelipod’s relatively low outlay means that it can be placed anywhere where parcels are needed. It uses encrypted secure codes to control access and offers a high level of physical security for deliveries as well as comprehensive auditing of use; it knows what has been delivered, when it was delivered and who accessed the box to collect it. It even photographs the contents of the box and sends an email or SMS confirmation after deliveries. It is designed to be stand-alone and so needs no wiring in.
What Pelipod delivers is the ability for firms with field based work-forces to shorten their supply-chain by reducing or eliminating intermediate delivery locations such as depots and locker-boxes. With goods delivered directly to the work-force, parcel collection journeys are eliminated freeing more time for productive customer engagement; more sales calls or engineering visits meaning more revenue and happier customers. Pelipod works 24/7, allowing multiple deliveries even if employees are away from home, but because they get notification of parcels arriving they can adjust their schedule as key components or items arrive.
A by-product of using Pelipod is that employees using the product have more job satisfaction because they are more productive. If field based employees wanted to act as couriers, they would have become couriers.