All About Fleet Dispatch + 20 Dispatching Tips

Managing a fleet has many moving components, which can take a long time to deal with manually. Fortunately, fleet dispatch software is available to help alleviate the stress and increase the chances of success in the delivery business. This article explains what a dispatcher does and provides the best dispatching tips to employ in your company.
Babak Heydari

Babak Heydari

April 22, 2022

What Does Fleet Dispatching Mean?

Fleet dispatching means directing and organizing truckers and vehicles to complete their assignments. We use fleet dispatch to manage deliveries, pickups, and support teams. If you polled organizations in various industries, you would probably find that fleet dispatch operations are managed in various ways. Modern routing issues are met by fleet dispatch with telematics, which provides a higher level of fleet control, visibility, accountability, and efficiency. Fleet dispatching is a fast-paced profession. The activities of each fleet dispatcher are unique to their industry. For example, public transit dispatchers must be aware of traffic trends. However, they do not usually authorize charges for drivers and do not need to change work orders. On the other hand, HVAC dispatchers must change work orders and assist with vehicle maintenance schedules. Let us see what a dispatcher is and what a dispatcher does for the company.

What Does a Dispatcher Do in Delivery?

All drivers or technicians in the field are under the command of the fleet dispatchers. They control operations, ensure everything runs smoothly, and proactively resolve concerns. Fleet dispatchers are responsible for several tasks, grouped into personnel management and logistics management. Driver tracking and ensuring that duties are completed according to plans are part of managing people and assisting drivers on the road. Managing logistics entails assisting teams with logistics and ensuring that drivers have all they need to complete their tasks. It entails coordinating various structures and processes so that other teams can do their tasks effectively.

How to Manage Fleet Dispatching Task?

The effectiveness of modern-day vehicle routing and scheduling is greatly enhanced by fleet management. Delivery fleet dispatching is employed to manage deliveries. To do so, you must concentrate on three areas, which we discuss below.

First Area: Logistics Management

Logistics management is the process of planning, organizing, and controlling people, operations, buildings, and technology involved in the storage and flow of goods from the first to the final mile of delivery. Logistics managers are in charge of monitoring supply chain networks, inventories, commodities transportation, and the fleets and people that perform these tasks in many situations. Because of the vast scope of work involved in logistics management, firms frequently divide tasks into multiple sections. Depending on the company's size, a separate individual manages each division. Supply chain, depot, inventory, and fleet and delivery managers are all included. COOs or fleet dispatchers can fill these positions in smaller businesses. However, the purpose of logistics management remains the same in all of these cases: to guarantee operational efficiency so that the company can satisfy all consumer expectations for last-mile delivery.

Second Area: Driver Management

Delivery logistics include driver management. It entails arranging drivers and operations to assure the delivery fleet's maximum performance. Also, to ensure legal compliance and enjoyment at work, each driver must adhere to safety and work regulations. A driver manager's job entails organizing drivers into shifts, managing their actions, providing them with information, and monitoring their field performance. One person (fleet manager) or dedicated teams (fleet dispatchers) manage all the drivers in a delivery fleet. Fleet managers and the fleet dispatcher can gather vital information regarding driver behavior by using fleet dispatching software.

Third Area: Vehicle Management

Vehicle management also plays a role in determining the essential delivery objectives. Logistics management also includes vehicle management. It entails overseeing the delivery fleet from the standpoint of the vehicle. It entails scheduling and dispatching trucks and controlling load capacity, fuel usage, and equipment maintenance. In technical terms, it entails ensuring that vehicles perform and can conduct deliveries when drivers use them. Vehicle managers and dispatchers now use digital tools, such as vehicle route optimization software.


5 Methods to Have a Successful Fleet Dispatch

Dispatching is critical to a fleet's operation. A Fleet dispatcher is an expert who assists in organizing fleet movement. This procedure is critical to the smooth operation of any delivery fleet. Furthermore, dispatchers have the power to make or destroy a fleet's whole operation. The following are the most effective methods to increase fleet dispatch efficiency:

1. Focus on People Management

For fleet dispatching, people management skills are essential. That is because, as a dispatcher, you want your drivers to know you are always available. Fleet dispatchers are the go-to people for any driver inquiries and are also the primary sources of authority and support while on the road. It is critical to put oneself in their position, mainly while assisting them with stressful circumstances. Compassion and empathy must be at the forefront of all communications. Technically, people management entails supervising employees to assist them in doing their duties properly.

2. Clear Communication

It is better to over-communicate than to miss an important announcement. A lapse in communication can hurt customers and operations as a whole. At the same time, you do not want to go overboard. Because too much communication can jeopardize a driver's safety and performance. As a dispatcher, you must be proactive in checking in on your team and receiving regular status updates. In addition, you should use last-mile delivery systems that provide you with visibility. As a result, you will be able to stay on top of things. Maintain a healthy mix of control and straightforward communication. You can keep operations operating smoothly, increase customer happiness, and increase revenues by communicating with your employees ahead of time.

3. Know the Organization

If you do not understand the nature of your field workers' jobs or your company, you will not be able to dispatch effectively. For example, an HVAC fleet dispatcher should know how many workers and labor hours are needed for each repair request. They must also know what kind of equipment is necessary and whether a technician is required to possess a specific set of abilities. On the other hand, a delivery dispatcher needs to know how many orders drivers can finish per route on average. If you do not do the work of your field teams, you will need to learn more about their responsibilities.

4. Schedule Deliveries in Advance

You must plan routes with several stops and schedule deliveries to dispatch effectively. A strategy in place ahead of time allows dispatchers to notice when another driver is needed to cover a shift. To ensure that you have enough people working to meet demand, you must plan. Jobs that need specialized or heavy equipment may require reorganization by dispatchers. Vehicle maintenance and tool repairs are other crucial items to consider ensuring that operations are finished on schedule.

5. Use Fleet Dispatch Technology

The key to better dispatching is technology. Each dispatcher uses current technologies to streamline its workflow, from hardware to software. Rather than serving as a problem-solving tool, a fleet management system ensures that operations align with business goals. Using software automation, you may also collect reports, manage drivers and vehicles, produce delivery notifications, and keep track of crucial KPIs in delivery logistics. It streamlines the process and assists dispatchers in becoming better and faster at their jobs.


6 Dispatching Tips to Improve Fleet Dispatch Efficiency

Having a well-defined protocol in place can help to increase fleet dispatching efficiency. The following are some dispatching tips for improving fleet dispatch in delivery businesses.

1. Have a Clear Process

Processes are critical to the success of any firm. Companies must be able to follow an effective work process to be successful. Processes clarify tasks and work, reducing confusion while also enhancing productivity. Ensure daily documentation to track if processes are being followed in your fleet to boost efficiency. In addition, provide process training to your dispatchers and drivers. Ascertain that they comprehend and allow them to ask questions and learn. It is in everyone's best interests for the entire fleet to understand the dedicated procedure since it allows everyone to work together more effectively.

2. Reduce Phone Calls with GPS Tracking

When dispatchers need to keep consumers up to date on expected delivery times, they frequently call drivers. It can distract the driver and frequently produces tension because it appears to be micromanaging. Dispatching teams frequently give load instructions and updates over various channels, including phone calls, SMS, and emails. This is a time-consuming process. Fleet dispatchers can instantly see accurate location data and predict arrival times via a digital interface by using real-time GPS monitoring. It allows dispatchers to update loads while in the cab and sends information to the driver. You can deliver ETAs directly to customers using some GPS tracking tools. GPS trackers can help you streamline your operations and improve the efficiency of your fleet.

3. Plan for Detention Time

Detention time has long been a problem in the transportation industry. Detention time has a particularly negative impact on drivers. They are frequently paid by the mile, making detention time prohibitively expensive. According to a recent study, minimizing dwell time when limited capacity can result in additional revenue of USD 1400 per driver each week. Unexpected detention time puts pressure on drivers to make up for the lost time by speeding to their next drop-off, which can be unsafe or result in a fine. Detention time has even been linked to an increase in crash rates. Doing everything to plan for and avoid detention time improves your fleet's dispatch efficiency.

4. Use Computer-Aided Fleet Dispatching

Computer-Aided Dispatch is the process of dispatching fleet cars using computer software. Route optimization and work order organization are two elements of computer dispatching software. Overall, computer-assisted fleet dispatching can help the truck fleet run more efficiently.

5. Design Trips with Room for Compliance

The lack of flexibility with their remaining service hours is a significant source of irritation among delivery drivers. Consider the following scenario: a driver has nine hours of drive time left, and their destination is eight and a half hours distant. Simply stopping to eat supper or use the restroom could cause the driver to miss their scheduled delivery time, forcing them to park on the side of the road and wait until they are legally allowed to drive again.

6. Improve the Driver-Dispatcher Relationship

Your fleet suffers when dispatchers and drivers cannot get along. Drivers and dispatchers come from different backgrounds and have different perspectives. You can improve the driver's and dispatchers' relationship by bridging the gap. Effective dispatching necessitates effort. Prioritizing your customers based on their needs is one technique to improve the efficiency of fleet dispatching. Determine which consumers demand immediate assistance and which require less immediate assistance. This list should be updated regularly, and you should learn which consumers should be prioritized. Dispatching based on necessity improves the operations and boosts the dispatching efficiency of your fleet.


5 Benefits of Fleet Dispatch Software

The correct fleet dispatch software benefits fleet operators. The following are a few of the benefits.

1. Fleet Dispatching Reduces Manual Labor

Matching truckers and trucks with delivery assignments is time-consuming and drains dispatchers and other back-end office employees. You may allow your team to focus on other higher-value duties by reducing time spent on the manual effort of allocating drivers through automation.

2. Fleet Dispatch Software Improves Control through Visibility

Operators and managers can gain control of their fleets using innovative dispatch solutions that employ interactive maps and GPS to track statuses and positions. Managers have more control over where and when to deploy drivers and how to handle exceptions, with more visibility over trucks and drivers.

3. Fleet Dispatcher Gains Agility

Thanks to GPS integration, real-time order updates, and interactive mapping, improved visibility can help your company respond to problems faster. After all, a lot can and will go wrong when drivers are on the road, and having real-time data on your fleet allows management to spot issues before they become irreversible. Fleet dispatchers and supervisors can use real-time data to make proactive, well-informed decisions on dealing with a problem. As a result, improved exception management and lower incoming customer call volumes are achieved.

4. Fleet Dispatch Boosts Flexibility

As a company grows or expands, the dispatch management process becomes more complicated, resulting in increased operational difficulties. Reliable software, on the other hand, allows businesses to scale their operations. Advanced fleet dispatch applications can adapt to meet fleet operators' specific and evolving needs, enabling dynamic route alterations as conditions change on delivery day. If your software solution incorporates sophisticated route optimization capability, you may stretch your existing capacity to accommodate higher volumes.

5. Fleet Dispatching Increases Customer Satisfaction

According to studies, businesses are concerned about rising customer demand for faster delivery times and consumers' expectations for low-cost or free shipping. Reliable and quick delivery is necessary these days since many online buyers would abandon their shopping carts if the company did not provide convenient shipping choices. On the other hand, having a dispatch system helps fleet owners provide more shipping options while ensuring accurate and reliable deliveries. Providing real-time information to dispatchers, managers, and drivers allows them to collaborate more effectively and provide outstanding delivery services.

4 Features to Look for in Fleet Dispatching Software

Everyone looking for fleet dispatching software should consider some essential features, including:

1. Order Tracking and Mapping | Fleet Dispatch

Order tracking and mapping are the backbones of any fleet dispatch software. You can continuously optimize over the day and avoid disruptions more easily if drivers can automatically update the delivery status in the field. You can better monitor driver behavior, manage your assets, and improve productivity by adding GPS integration.

2. Automated Scheduling

Manually allocating delivery assignments and routes is inefficient, but you can do so in minutes with the correct dispatch scheduling software. Ideally, your solution would also assist you in determining which driver and truck are most suited for each delivery task.

3. Automated Notifications

It is challenging to keep tracking shipments in real-time, especially for large fleets. On the other hand, automated notifications make this process considerably more manageable. As we have seen, providing updates throughout the drivers' shifts makes troubleshooting and modifications much more accessible.

4. Mobile Access | Fleet Dispatch

Both drivers and dispatchers require convenient and two-way communication. Mobile accessibility gives drivers and dispatchers on-the-go information such as pre-assignment load detail and a mechanism for drivers and dispatchers to check in quickly. A mobile app also allows back-end workers, such as customer support representatives, to notify drivers of any issues with assigned deliveries.

Final Thoughts

Using the proper fleet dispatch software causes better visibility and control over drivers and delivery vehicles, more flexibility, faster and better-informed responses to the unexpected, and increased customer satisfaction. As the competition gets more challenging, technologies that assist you in achieving these advantages will become even more critical. Our 14-day free trial is a great way to get started.

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