Palmer and Harvey, the UK’s biggest delivered wholesaler, has announced the roll-out of the second phase of its Electronic Proof of Delivery (EPOD) system, bringing what it calls “increased efficiencies to retailers”.
P&H says phase two of EPOD will bring many benefits to customers, including: improved estimated arrival times; Faster query handling and resolution; Real time updates on deliveries available via customer services; and consistent service at every delivery.
The first phase of the project is already up and running, with 850 new personal digital assistant (PDA) handsets with in-built telephone, messaging and satellite navigation now in operation across the fleet. With the PDA’s drivers are able to provide real time updates on their deliveries which can be shared with retailers via the customer services team.
In this second phase, which will be rolled out between January and April 2017, customers will see an even bigger change in the next step towards a paperless delivery operation.
Customers will now be asked to sign directly on the PDA handsets, creating a digital ‘proof of delivery’. So while customers will still be handed a paper receipt, they can also request digital documentation via P&H’s customer services division.
Mark Leonard, group operations director at P&H, said: “The continuing development of the EPOD system means that Palmer and Harvey is becoming even more accountable, and making the most of technological updates to improve our offering to customers.
“With customer services able to provide real-time updates, and a dedication to faster query handling and resolution, we are confident that customers will see significant benefits of the new system.
The third phase of EPOD, which will see the integration of a new online customer portal, will launch later in 2017.
We’ll have a full story on this, together with an interview with Mark Leonard, in the January issue of Wholesale News – out next week.