Roland Slegers-Leijsten, Founder & CEO and Tom van Dam, COO
Over the last decade, retail businesses have been establishing a strong online presence to capitalize on the meteoric rise of e-commerce and cater to the shifting needs of the tech-savvy, modern-day consumer. However, in the year 2020, as the coronavirus pandemic disrupted their conventional supply chain processes, retailers found themselves switching their delivery approach from an online-to-offline setup to an only-web-based service. As a result, most retailers struggled to minimize the losses caused by this transition because their budding online services lacked the comprehensive capabilities to efficiently process the plethora of logistical tasks required to cope with the sudden surge in demand for web-shop services.
One such retailer that saw their online volumes going up rapidly is Ekoplaza—the largest organic supermarket in the Netherlands— which faced the challenges of scaling their online operations with the increase in consumer demand. After initially finding difficulty in completing consumer orders, the organic produce retailer recognized that to overcome this challenge, they need a holistic restoration of its logistics. In light of this, the retail giant started seeking partners who could deliver a robust logistic solution. Enter DeliveryMatch, a Netherlands-based logistics tech firm offers its innovative transport management system to help retailers take complete control of their entire logistics chain. “With our system, Ekoplaza was able to seamlessly manage their stock information, warehouse capacity and delivery capacity while efficiently narrowing down their delivery and shipping options to the ones that are best-suited for the consumers,” says Roland Slegers-Leijsten, founder and CEO at DeliveryMatch.
Founded in 2013, DeliveryMatch has been instrumental in assisting retailers, logistic service providers, manufacturers and carriers to overcome the most prevalent challenges in the B2C, B2B and C2C logistics operations via TMS. According to Tom van Dam, COO at DeliveryMatch, retail businesses struggle to boost their logistics efficiencies because their sales chain lacks visibility and scalability, which is caused by the siloed operations of all the disparate tech-driven deployments.
As an antidote to this problem, the company’s transport management system enables real-time connections within a client’s entire sales chain (including Webshop, WMS and ERP systems), allowing retailers to gain a holistic view of their operations. “The DeliveryMatch system connects all sales channels and extracts information from different platforms to provide reliable carrier and shipment delivery options,” adds van Dam. And with its modular architecture, the company can seamlessly develop and activate additional modules that act as a bridge to a prevalent gap in the entire retail space or as a solution to a customer-specific challenge. A prime example that highlights DeliveryMatch’s modular system is its project with Ekoplaza, where the company activated its warehouse management module to assist the leading retailer take a proactive approach to manage their stock availability and warehouse capacity and, in turn, enable reliable timely deliveries.
Further discussing the core competencies of the DeliveryMatch system, Slegers-Leijsten elaborates, “For example we receive orders to be shipped from multiple warehouses, gather product information, track the warehouses where it needs to be shipped from, and then find the best-suited carrier for the final ‘one drop’ delivery for goods coming from multiple warehouses.” Alternatively, if making a delivery is expected to incur a negative net profit to its clients, the system enables delivery managers to communicate with the customer and facilitate a conventional in-store pickup and/or ship from store. Similarly, DeliveryMatch’s system can also be configured to enable large retailers to use their brick-and-mortar stores as partial pickup points for consumers. “More often than not, customers tend to buy additional products when they visit a store, and we want our clients to capitalise on this commercial proposition with our system,” states van Dam.
Apart from these functionalities, the company has also developed a returns module, which enables retailers to send an email link to their customers in case they want to return their order. Once the consumer clicks on the link, they can select the goods to be returned. After that a return booking will automatically be made at the most optimal carrier, thereby minimizing cumbersome and undesirable steps that drive costs. More recently, DeliveryMatch is also building modules that can help e-commerce retailers shift their ‘push’ approach to product sale, which involves the continuous checking of the availability of stock, warehouses, carriers, and more, to ensure that consumers receive their order in time at a chozen moment. Despite this, online stores tend to make multiple delivery attempts before finalizing the order because of a lack of communication between the customer and the retailer. To prevent this problem, DeliveryMatch is offering retailers a module that can assist them in establishing a ‘pull’ process, which will enable them to choose the best-suited carrier, ship from warehouse, and shipping options while a consumer is on the checkout screen of an order. This will allow the client to be ready in case the consumer makes the order and will not have spent extensive resources prematurely if the user chooses to go in another direction. The result is happy consumers, retailers and carriers.
Looking ahead, DeliveryMatch aims to continue its operational growth by adding newer and more intuitive functionalities. In pursuit of this, the company is currently working to incorporate artificial intelligence into their system, which will enable the system to automatically optimize a user’s entire logistics operations based on the parameters entered into the interface and historical data. Another key step on DeliveryMatch’s promising roadmap is the addition of a module that will allow retailers to calculate the CO2 output of every shipment in real-time. With this functionality, the company plans to help retailers choose the most CO2-neutral shipping, storage, and delivery options, thereby driving greener and environmentally conscious operations.