With great volume comes great uncertainty: Managing the last mile as a scale-up

For scale-ups, the delivery phase is vital to the strategy. It needs to prepare for both the complexity and opportunities for efficiency that increasing order volumes bring.

It may seem strange to foreground scaling up amid ongoing economic uncertainty. However, the home delivery market is still showing strong potential, particularly in groceries. And delivery start-ups or companies offering home deliveries that can cement positive unit economics are still on track for success. This involves prioritising mindful growth at a manageable rate. Growth that’s both profitable and sustainable, rather than growth at all costs.

Below, we explore this scale-up phase blend of uncertainty and high-potential efficiency. Plus, we highlight why it’s never too early to build the solid tech foundation your scale-up needs!

Scaling up brings uncertainty — but it’s the right move

Without a solid underlying model in place, increased orders can quickly mean mayhem. Mayhem that can punch profit-leaking holes in your business! If you’re scrambling to deal with scale-up volume, you won’t be able to guarantee on-time delivery. Nor will you have the structure and planning needed to keep your customers and suppliers happy. The last mile often drops down the priority list during scale-up, but it shouldn’t. It remains the make-or-break for your customers; as such, it’s a make-or-break as you scale.

Handily, there’s a way to eliminate this uncertainty: leveraging a delivery tech platform that’s ready to scale with your business.

The best part? It doesn’t matter where you are in the scale-up journey. You might need support right now, as you’re in the thick of it. Or you might be planning to scale 18 months from now. The fact is, the earlier you can set the foundation, the better. The easiest, most cost-effective route to ace scaling up is to plan ahead. You need to have the infrastructure to scale your order volume and route complexity before go time. That way, you can avoid mayhem when it counts!

How scaling up right generates efficiency, not just profit

Your plans for rapid growth mean a solid delivery tech platform is a must-have. Yet the software’s utility will reach beyond this, too. More orders open up chances for greater efficiency and, in turn, sustainable profitability. For example, it’s just as costly to do the paperwork for a small order as for a large one. With the right tech flows set up, you won’t notice the difference — aside from in turnover!

Great delivery tracking tech streamlines your customer service, too. Scaling up means more customers and more calls, of course. The question is, can your current capacity cope? Software including auto-notifications and real-time package tracking changes the game. We’ve seen it cut incoming support calls by 40%, allowing your support team to focus on more complex queries.

Scaling up is a dynamic, high-stakes phase for any business that’s ready for serious growth. The uncertainty is worth the gains in profitability and efficiency, even in the current climate. Yet the saying rings true: failing to prepare is preparing to fail. So, let’s look at how the right delivery tech can cement your preparation for scale-up success.

Signs you need a delivery tech platform

Across your processes and platforms, from logistics to finance, we’ve highlighted the telltale signs it’s time for a delivery tech platform to help lighten your workload:  

  • You’re spending increasing time on planning: Creating trickle-down, compounding delays, from your back office through to your warehouse. 
  • You’re struggling to schedule and track all your deliveries: Managing your vehicle and driver capacity as order volumes increase is a real headache. It’s also hard to know where drivers are en route, making planning and customer support trickier.  
  • You’re leaking money and unsure how to troubleshoot: You see there are gaps but their source isn’t obvious. Investigating them is a time-consuming stress factor that you’re putting off.
  • You have no single source of truth: You’re working across multiple platforms holding similar data. Without a master platform, workloads are duplicated. There are also avoidable confusions and errors across your teams, locations and data sets. Or you might have no tech platform at all yet. Processes are still manual, time-heavy and tough to track. As a result, they can’t be quickly replicated or auto-improved with each iteration. Think driver scheduling, warehouse packing, vehicle routing and more.

How a delivery tech platform will help simplify scale-up

Selected and implemented right, a delivery tech platform can play a crucial role in safeguarding your scale-up process. The positive effects tend to be quick and wide-ranging, and we’ve scoped out the major aspects here:

Optimised routes, for vehicle and driver efficiency

With benefits beyond just speed, route optimisation software ensures you’ll keep pace with snowballing scale-up demand.

Less time on delivery, more on business development

With smooth-running delivery operations, you can focus on marketing to new customers. Innovate and improve products and services, forge links with new suppliers and partners, and expand your business into new areas. You’ll gain back time to change-manage the scale-up phase within your internal team, too. 

Track tailored KPIs

Dashboards and reports enable real-time troubleshooting. Take efficient reactive action when needed, and work proactively wherever possible. With smart KPI tracking, you can respond to gaps before they become real profit leaks. 

Real-time operations visibility 

Besides auto-updates, solve customer queries in seconds and fire-fight as needed. Ensuring quality, responsive customer experience is key to building loyalty. And retaining customers is especially crucial in the financially precarious scale-up phase. With the right delivery tech in place, you’ll be set to manage it seamlessly! 

Delivery tech designed for your scale-up 

Scaling up is an exciting phase, with plenty of curveballs you’ll need to contend with. To smooth your growth journey, and ensure your customers stay your top priority, you’ll need a solid tech backbone. With a delivery platform that scales with you, you can alleviate the uncertainty of increasing orders. And whether you’re already scaling or it’s on your business horizon, it’s the tech support system you need. 

Reach out to us for a demo of our delivery software at work. See what it can do for your scale-up!

Picture of Rasmus Hallgren Sánchez

Rasmus Hallgren Sánchez

Marketing Manager at Gordon Tech. Rasmus is passionate about all things marketing, e-commerce, and digitalisation. Has an almost incurable predilection for hockey and tacos.

Gordon is a cloud-based platform that empowers retailers to manage, track, and optimise their last mile deliveries.