At the moment, both online and offline parcel lockers systems are represented on the market. By the beginning of 2021, the demand for e-commerce has increased many times, delivery volumes also have increased and after this, the requirements of the owners of parcel lockers and the end customers have increased too. Despite the presence of online systems, offline solutions also continue to work, but they can’t provide the required service. Weaknesses of the offline system can lead to the crash of key business processes.
The main difficulties when using offline devices
Offline parcel lockers cannot be monitored and controlled through a single entry point, the entire network works in a fragmented manner, there is no data on the load, cell contamination or equipment breakdowns, it is difficult to track the life cycle of packages.
Lack of customer feedback
When the recipient picks up the parcel, the network owner does not have data on the operation status (for example delay), it is impossible to understand whether the delivery service was provided in full and evaluate its quality.
Inability to update software remotely
To update the locker’s network, physical presence of employees is required to manually upload the software to each device.
High cost of network maintenance
Ensuring the operability of a network of offline parcel lockers requires the maintenance of a large number of employees who will constantly move between devices to locally track their load, obtain data on unclaimed parcels, problems with equipment. At the same time, difficulties arise with organizing the work schedule of couriers and determining their demand in the right locations.
As a result, the offline system can perform the tasks assigned to it, but it will be very difficult to maintain the quality of service, especially when scaling the system and to fight the costs of maintaining the solution.
Advantages of the Smartix online system
The network of locker’s operating within the framework of the Smartix online parcel system offers a modern solution of all problems for organizing business delivery of any size.
Key features of the solution:
- Display of information on fullness in real time for each device, cell or network segment. Analytics on the average storage time of parcels.
- Tracking packages dispense operations on the server.
- Generation of various notifications (parcel delivered, parcel awaiting pick up, parcel sent back to the warehouse).
- Flexible configuration of delivery scenarios (storage times, notification types, etc.) through a single back office.
- Tracking overdue operations, feedback to the recipient.
- Technical monitoring of the parcel lockers are available on the server for prompt tracking and response. Downtime of equipment due to malfunction or contamination is reduced, the quality of services and customer loyalty increase.
- Sending SMS to customers through a single service. Centralized notification service, operational information on shipments, transparent billing, work through a single account.
- The functionality of the situation center — technical support for customers (resolving disputes, remote opening of cells), operation support of the devices network, management of the life cycle of items.
In the event of short-term communication problems, the online solution provides temporary offline mode. Smartix includes a specific reference system, the ability to accumulate data about events that will be sent to the server when the connection is restored. The required reliability of the complex is achieved for working in any conditions.
Smartix software continues to evolve in accordance with the delivery automation market, the needs of business owners and end customers. Thanks to the built-in system for remote updating of parcel devices, new versions of software are promptly transferred to devices according to the conditions specified in the system back office. It is possible to launch various UI on selected lockers and test experimental functionality before deploying it to all network segments.
Smartix is not only modern locker’s software, but also various locker’s models for launching a turnkey network of devices. For trial testing of the online system on the existing network of parcel lockers (or for small customers), the launch of the cloud software is available by subscription. Large networks can purchase a license for installation on their own server.