• Nour Shawky

The Effects of Covid-19 on Last-Mile Logistics

Covid-19 has brought new challenges and opportunities for every industry. Last-mile logistics has not been spared. Last-mile delivery has been the toughest part of the supply chain. There has been a chaotic and drastic spike in the demand for goods delivery in Egypt.


Businesses have changed their business models to get closer to the customers. The temporary closing of retail stores has led to the increase in home delivery of non-essential and essential goods.


This drastic shift in customer behavior has prompted last-mile logistics companies to make their deliveries flexible, fast, efficient, and safe. It is important to understand the effects Covid-19 has had on last-mile delivery because it has an impact on the future of the whole delivery industry.


So, how has Covid-19 affected last-mile delivery? Read along to find out.


Home delivery growth.

As a means of curbing the spread of Covid 19, most people have opted to stay at home resulting in a spike in home deliveries. Lots of restaurants and supermarkets have started home deliveries due to measures set up by the government for safety and health concerns.


Home delivery has been beneficial especially to the elderly and most vulnerable customers. It is easier as there are no rules regarding social distancing or long queues. This has created more demand for home deliveries for e-commerce businesses.


Unbalanced demand.

Egypt has come up with measures to control the spread of the virus. Among these measures are border control and lockdown measures. This has led to companies experiencing a drop-down in supplies despite the high demand for some products like groceries.


Delivery of these products has been delayed due to the border control measures. There was also low delivery capacity due to a drop in human resources since some delivery and warehouse employees absconded duty for their safety.


These factors have made companies focus more on the demand of products and their customer needs. They have put up strategies to meet those demands and execute contingency plans for securing demand.


Change in delivery timing.

Some companies have struggled to meet the demand for delivery. They have been forced to prioritize the delivery types like essentials. The delivery timing has also been shortened to same-day delivery or next-day delivery. This has caused customers to choose the companies with the fastest and free delivery.

Due to these challenges, logistics companies have opted to automate the supply chain by adopting last-mile logistics software. The adoption of artificial intelligence has helped companies balance the demand and supply of goods to their customers. Automation has favored last-mile delivery in many ways as we can see below.


Improved visibility.

Last-mile logistics software gives companies real-time visibility on the whereabouts of their vehicles. This gives the supply chain and logistics managers control over their fleet and also minimizes spoilage and thefts.


Optimizing delivery routes.

A business's route planning software enables it to optimize delivery routes to avoid delays. Drivers are updated on the best route to take for faster delivery. This increases the number of deliveries and savings on fuel.


Promotes transparency.

Logistics visibility software enables the owners of the supply chain to know who placed an order, when it was placed, who will make the delivery, and when the delivery will be completed.


Enhances customer engagement.

Delivery visibility software enables customers to view the status of their orders. This shows when they placed their order, the shipping information and when they will receive the order. This improves transparency and has a positive impact on the trust of a customer.


In a nutshell, Covid-19 has had a positive and negative impact on last-mile logistics. However, businesses in Egypt started to automate the logistics and supply process using Norma together with visibility from Altair DC which enables them to maximize their profits and gain a fully integrated experience from automated route planning to real-time visibility.


Read also: How logistics companies can benefit from machine learning and evolutionary computing

Why NORMA is the right route optimization software for logistics & last-mile delivery companies? With an AI-based route optimization software like NORMA, which is developed by Softec Technologies, Logistics Companies can develop mastery of their delivery routes in a manner that improves profitability.

Using Machine Learning and Evolutionary Computing, two key disciplines of Artificial Intelligence, NORMA can help Logistics Companies to optimize logistics operations and achieve more in an increasingly competitive and noisy market.

NORMA can be used standalone, but also quickly connected to your existing systems using APIs. Below are some facts of what Logistics companies can achieve with NORMA:

  • Reduces the number of used vehicles by up to 35%

  • Reduces the number of miles driven by up to 22%

  • Reduces the actual driving time by up to 18%


Download our case study to learn how a 3PL courier is achieving a 96% delivery success rate with AI.

For more information on how NORMA can provide similar results to your logistics operations, feel free to request a one-to-one live demo, and one of our experts will be happy to call you back to discuss your requirements in detail.

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