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Q: Need Laundry Service Route Optimization help. ( Answered,   0 Comments )
Question  
Subject: Need Laundry Service Route Optimization help.
Category: Business and Money > Small Businesses
Asked by: small_laundry_usa-ga
List Price: $117.00
Posted: 30 Oct 2006 20:52 PST
Expires: 29 Nov 2006 20:52 PST
Question ID: 778674
Seeking Delivery Route Optimization via a Web Service.
Hi, I have a small uniform and linen rental service business.  I
delivery clean uniforms, floor mats, and linens to my customers and
pick up dirty items once a week, every week. My customers stay the
same most of the time.  I have two routes and about 400 deliveries per
week.  Some customers demand that I deliver on a certain day, some
don't care. Restaurants need delivery in the morning or mid afternoon.

I need to optimize my routes to save time and fuel.  I need to
optimize my routes perhaps every quarter. I am looking for a web
service (not a software package) that will allow me to upload my
customers addresses, requested delivery days and delivery time periods, delivery
duration (larger customers take more time), and then return to me a
optimized delivery plan, with driving instructions, delivery time, and
geocodes. It should also
produce a map of the route. Excel file format or CVS for upload and
download would be fine.

Does this kind of service exist? If so what is the best value. I would
like to pay by usage if possible. Feel free to change my box if you
want to suggest another approach to the problem.
I don't want another software package to install and maintain. This
would be a great service for Google to provide. Eric Schmidt are you
listening? Think of all the fuel wasted in America because small
companies don't have to tools to optimize their delivery routes.

Request for Question Clarification by pafalafa-ga on 02 Nov 2006 04:43 PST
This company:


http://www.routesmith.com/


offers web-based route optimization services, and price is based on
how often the service is used, and how many deliveries are included in
the system.

I'm not posting this as an answer to your question, because I cannot
speak to the question of this being the "best value" or not.

However, RouteSmith offers a free trial of their service, and seems
like it would be worth a shot to see how well it works for you.

In addition, it seems to be one of the only services that I am aware
of that is web-based, and that is geared to small and medium sized
businesses.

Let me know what you find out.

pafalafa-ga
Answer  
Subject: Re: Need Laundry Service Route Optimization help.
Answered By: umiat-ga on 18 Nov 2006 10:23 PST
 
Hello, small_laundry_usa-ga! 

 I don't know if any of the following companies will provide an
acceptable option for you, but since you seem open to suggestions,
here are the best (and only) web-based route optimization services I
have found. Whether they are cost-efficient or applicable to your
delivery service will have to be determined through contact with the
provider. You are the only one who can truly determine the "best
value." I did manage to find a few other web-based delivery
optimization companies, but they only service specific industries at
the present time.


CUBE ROUTE
===========
 
http://www.cuberoute.com/

http://www.cuberoute.com/AboutUs/Overview.html

http://www.cuberoute.com/Solutions/RoutingDispatching.html


In minutes, Cube Route's sophisticated and powerful constraint-based
optimizing engine geocodes, sequences and optimizes delivery routes,
which are structured, based on street level digital maps. The system
assigns estimated times of arrival (ETA) and sequences stops based on
constraints. Routes are then reviewed by the dispatcher and deployed
to the fleet. This module incorporates exceptions and recalibrates
routes in the event of changes, making dynamic optimization,
sequencing within a zone, and periodic zone rebalancing possible. This
drives operational improvements that translate into real savings and
improves service by narrowing the delivery windows.
http://www.cuberoute.com/Solutions/RoutingDispatching.html

"Improving last mile delivery is not just about getting the latest
technology on board. It's about managing a business process. By
combining the power of wireless technology with the flexibility and
convenience of Web-based logistics applications, fleet operators can
now make the last mile delivery as efficient as the rest of their
supply chain operations."
http://www.cuberoute.com/AboutUs/News/n120.html

* The downside of this recommendation is that I see no pricing on the
site. However, the apprea to offer a "pay as you go" feature, as seen
in this case example:

"While Village Nurseries had researched a number of other logistics
solutions, Cube Route was a perfect fit for their business. "The
software-as-a-service model was extremely attractive to us, and a
major factor in our decision to work with Cube Route. We didn?t have
to pay any upfront startup or licensing costs, and we automatically
get feature upgrades as part of the package. The pay-as-you-go
subscription also means that seasonal variances in our business are
factored in," explained Chesshir.
http://www.cuberoute.com/AboutUs/Press/p25.html


Also see "Cube Route Establishes U.S. Sales Headquarters." January 18, 2006
http://www.directionsmag.com/press.releases/?duty=Show&id=13409

 "Cube Route facilitates the management of the delivery process for
transportation and  field service organizations. Offered on a
pay-as-you-go subscription basis,......




NETROUTER
==========

"NetRouteris a Web-based application that can save up to 25% of
delivery and service call costs through optimization of distribution
and route assignments. It combines the power and simplicity of the Web
with the proven experience of a workhorse proprietary optimization
engine.
http://www.netrouter.com/Solutions.htm


Know the application in an hour - A clear menu system with logical
flow helps you stay focused on your routing problems. All you need is
a computer with a web browser to reap the savings of optimized
routing.

Create daily results in minutes - Even complex distributions involving
hundreds of trucks with thousands of customers are completed in
minutes.

Save up to 25% of your distribution costs - Our customers experience
significant savings utilizing our proprietary optimized routing
routines to minimize distance traveled and trucks used to deliver
goods from distributing centers to customer sites.

Minimize your total cost of ownership - Don't spend thousands on
unnecessary supply chain software, hardware, or additional personel
and training.

** Use our application as you need it.

http://www.netrouter.com/index.htm

=

NetRouter, Incorporated?s expertise is in designing, developing, and
consulting with companies with their own private truck fleet, or
service call vehicles, to optimize the distribution function such that
costs are minimized, while maintaining a high-level of customer
service. NetRouter can be used for optimizing service calls,
deliveries and irregular routes in both metropolitan areas and between
cities/towns.
http://www.netrouter.com/AboutUs.htm


* This company offers a 30-day free trial. The downside is that there
is not enough information on the site to know if they provide mapping,
and they do not mention pricing.



ROUTESMITH
===========
http://www.routesmith.com/index.html


RouteSmith Pro is ideal for medium to large delivery and service
operations that manage 100 to 150+ stops per week. RouteSmith Pro
includes all of the same great features as our standard product, plus
these great features:
http://www.routesmith.com/products.html

* Unlimited stops per month
* Custom account configuration
* Integration with GPS track & trace services such as, Xora, TeleNavTrack, and 
  more.
* Advanced data import capabilities through RouteSmith web services, e.g., 
  automatically import order information from your enterprise software 
  application.
* Distribution from multiple warehouse locations
* Advanced mapping utilities
* Barcode and inventory management capabilities
* Call center & phone notification capabilities
* Automated e-mail services
* Advanced reporting
* Multiple payment options and pre-payment discounts
* Enhanced account support

=

Pricing Schedule - At RouteSmith our pricing model is based on the
number of deliveries we service within a given billing cycle. The
premise is simple: the more you use RouteSmith, the lower your price.

* Pricing starts at 99 per delivery and goes down based on delivery volume.
* Pre payment discounts are available and can reduce your costs by up to 20%.
http://www.routesmith.com/pricing.html


* Custom modifications



DESCARTES
==========

 This might be another option, but there is no pricing on their site
and I have a feeling it is a very expensive product that is probably
more than you need.
http://www.descartes.com/solutions/
http://www.descartes.com/resources/solutions/dms_overview.pdf


"Service providers, including recycling, document retention, uniforms,
workplace support, equipment maintenance, inspection and security,
thrive based upon the efficiency and effectiveness of their pick-up
and delivery operations. They must be able to offer pick-up and
delivery services performance that is differentiated by
responsiveness, reliability and time in front of the customer.
Simultaneously, service providers need to optimize the utilization of
their resources to maximize profits and minimize investment."
http://www.descartes.com/industries/service_maintenance/index.html
  	
Descartes helps service providers:

 * Experience significant reduction in costs and improved operational efficiency
   through more effective territory design and service policy strategies.
 * Capture a greater market share and increase current customers? business 
   through dynamic routing that can react to last minute opportunities and 
   changes in customer demand.
 * Improve customer service through better on-time performance, more efficient 
   routes that allow for more time in front of the customer and up-to-the-minute
   status via integrated real-time wireless dispatch and tracking.
 * Use Web-based scheduling and delivery status to create revenue-generating 
   opportunities by offering direct scheduling access to customers, premium 
   levels of service and pick up and delivery tracking.
 * Collect and organize pick up and delivery and compliance statistics to 
   improve operational performance and better manage customer relationships.  


====


 In case you decide to resort to non web-based software, you might be
interested in looking over the "2006 Vehicle Routing Software Survey."

 See "On the Road to Integration - 2006 survey of vehicle routing
software spotlights critical supply chain management role," By
Randolph Hall
http://www.lionhrtpub.com/orms/orms-6-06/frvehiclerouting.html

 Vehicle Routing Software Survey
 http://www.lionhrtpub.com/orms/surveys/Vehicle_Routing/vrss.html


===


 I hope one of these solutions works for you. Best of luck!


Sincerely,


umiat


web-based delivery route optimization
web-based vehicle routing
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