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The key to successful grocery delivery: Don’t forget the drivers.

  •   2 min read

Drivers are the backbone of any delivery service. Making their jobs easier will help the business shine.

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Welcome to our Grocery Delivery Lessons series, where we give you key insights into how best to build a grocery delivery service that works for customers, drivers, and grocers. Let’s get started:

One oft-forgotten group of essential workers? Delivery drivers. Throughout this pandemic, those individual heroes risking their lives daily to transport goods and people are vital to a functioning society. One of these drivers, in Falmouth, Massachusetts, puts it best in the Boston Globe:  “[I]f I do five deliveries a day, that’s five people who didn’t have to go to the store…It’s five people who could have gotten sick.” 

When designing a new grocery delivery operation, or planning on improvements to an existing one, drivers are absolutely indispensable — pandemic or not. Their satisfaction directly results in the success of the business at-large and should be central to all planning and decision-making. 

To start, driver-facing apps, as well as all driver communication, should be made as painless as possible, so drivers can focus on navigating safely and efficiently. Here’s how to do it.

Nimble Navigation  

Whether it’s bumper-to-bumper on the freeway or detours caused by new construction, 

there are a number of unexpected events that can create a headache for delivery drivers trying to complete their tasks quickly and safely.

Driver apps should be powered by intelligent routing technology that can handle live events and additional inputs to generate the most efficient trip plan — even when the best route can change at any moment. 

Advanced routing reduces on-the-job stress for drivers, in turn contributing to a more seamless customer experience and much smoother operation overall.  

Smart UX

Drivers must operate the vehicle, deliver the orders, and communicate between both store management and customers, all for long hours at a time. The last thing a driver needs — and the last thing their attention should be drawn to — is a finicky and unreliable app. 

To avoid any dangerous on-the-road difficulties, driver apps need to be designed by top UX experts, constantly utilizing incoming feedback to improve the interface’s functionality. 

When an app is built with a deep understanding of driver behavior and the number of clicks required to complete an action is minimized, the delivery driver’s job becomes simpler and the operation as a whole becomes scalable. 

Easy & Automated Communication 

At their best, driver apps support order status tracking and multi-way communication for drivers, customers, and store administrators. 

Order tracking should be facilitated both through advanced GPS technology and an in-app status button, which drivers can use when moving from one stage of a last-mile delivery (like pickup or dropoff) to another, thus keeping administrators and customers aware of their progress. 

Communication channels should enable drivers and customers to securely connect via phone, text, and instant messenger.

The way to achieve all of the above is by implementing an easy-to-use last-mile delivery solution. Let the experts cover the back-end tech — empowering drivers to consistently perform to the very best of their ability and empowering administrators to support and manage them with ease. 

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