Same-day delivery was once a luxury that was offered by a few select online vendors for a few select items. Not anymore. Now, same-day delivery has become a standard that many consumers expect businesses to provide for a wide range of products, from construction materials to groceries to office supplies.
In order to satisfy this new expectation, businesses that offer online ordering have been forced to enlist the aid of an army of on-demand delivery drivers. Anar Mammadov, CEO of Senpex, is intimately familiar with the effort that goes into providing on-demand delivery. His business employs more than 8,000 drivers in ten US states who serve the on-demand delivery needs of more than 2,000 corporate partners by providing same-day and next-day delivery.
Anar shared with us some of the components that make up a day in the life of an on-demand delivery driver. His insights reveal that mobile technology is a critical component in the complex system that supports the ever-expanding on-demand economy.
“For our on-demand delivery drivers, their day actually begins the night before,” Anar explains. “That is when they pull up their Senpex driver app and check the orders that are scheduled for the next day. After reviewing the details, they decide which orders they want to commit to delivering.”
Systems like the one used by Senpex allow drivers to access the available assignments through a user-friendly mobile app. The app serves as the drivers’ lifeline to the dispatch and operations team, feeding them delivery opportunities as well as alerting them to important delivery updates. The app even lets them know when deteriorating traffic conditions make it necessary to change their delivery route. Senpex designed its own app, which it makes available to the companies that it assists with in-house logistics
For the most part, the information that is made available to drivers through delivery apps is generated and delivered through an automated system. Once an order is placed, the system gathers all of the pertinent information from the client and feeds it to the drivers through the app. Some systems, like the one Senpex developed, even automatically generate the optimal delivery route using AI-enhanced technology. With the high volume of deliveries that delivery services must manage, automation is an essential part of their success.
“With thousands of deliveries being processed every day, automation is essential,” Anar says. “Our automated system manages the process from start to finish. It even tracks the driver throughout his or her route, sending updates to clients on the ETA for deliveries. The only time our dispatch team gets personally involved is on the rare occasions when a client calls to report an issue.”
Anar believes that one key to keeping on-demand drivers motivated is providing them with a high level of flexibility. Senpex’s drivers select the deliveries that they want to take on. There is no penalty for passing on an opportunity. This means that drivers can decide to spend their day making many low-mileage deliveries or a few high-mileage deliveries. If they would rather not make food deliveries, they can opt out of those. If they prefer to focus on one particular client, they can do that also, becoming a dedicated driver on a consistent route.
Overall, drivers working with Senpex decide what their day will look like, which is a level of flexibility that Anar says not all delivery businesses offer.
“Transparency is important to us because it makes things easier for our drivers,” Anar explains. “They get all of the details of the delivery in advance to help them to make their decision. They know what they are delivering, where they are picking it up from, and where it is going. It allows them to make an informed commitment.”
In addition to the scheduled deliveries, on-demand drivers typically have opportunities to take on rush deliveries. These are the same-day deliveries requested by clients. Upon accepting these orders, drivers commit to picking them up quickly, which usually means within 30 minutes. Because rush deliveries can be more stressful, they typically involve a higher pay rate.
Once a driver makes a commitment to a delivery, the automated delivery platform triggers a series of notifications. These include reminders as the time for picking up the order gets closer.
“When clients request a pickup at a particular time, it is important to them that the package be picked up at that time,” Anar says. “So we make sure that the driver will show up on time. If the system detects that the driver is running behind schedule, it starts pushing him with reminders.”
When the delivery arrives at its intended location, the automated process alerts the recipient and provides a photo taken by the driver to show proof of delivery. At that point, most drivers pull up their app to get the details on their next delivery, starting the process all over again.
For those who enjoy being on the road and setting their own schedule, the life of an on-demand delivery driver might be just the ticket. To explore what working with Senpex entails, visit the “Become a Courier” page on its website.