With global online sales projected to skyrocket in the next few years, online sales in the US alone are expected to surpass $700 billion by 2020. In order to survive in the flourishing and highly competitive e-commerce market, online retailers are adopting customer-first policies designed to ensure customer and revenue retention.
We want you to feel confident that your vehicle is in safe and working condition while you are on the road! Whether you are a Dispatch Driver, a customer or have your own vehicles to maintain, Dispatch wants to provide valuable information on what you should be checking and when! Click here to download our free Vehicle Maintenance Checklist.
Cincinnati has the fastest growing economy in the entire Midwest. Couple it with the report by U.S. News & World that includes it among the best places to live in the nation, and you have enough reasons to work in this great Ohio city.
Although it has excellent educational institutes, low crime rates, and higher employment levels that receive more appreciation, there is another major reason for the achievements of the city. While it is one of the most underrated aspects of the town, Cincinnati provides its resident with one of the best commute facilities as well.
It may be the least marketed factor of the city; we tell you exactly why driving in Cincinnati is among its major selling points.
Lower Fuel Rates
Gas prices in Ohio may not be among the best in the entire country. But compared to its neighbors, the Buckeye State has one of the lowest gas tax rates. A 2017 study by Tax Foundation suggests that while the per gallon gas tax in Ohio was 28.01 cents, it is neighbored by Pennsylvania, ranked number one for the highest fuel taxes in the country, at 58.20 cents per gallon.
Except for Kentucky where the rates were slightly lower and stood at 26.00 cents per gallon, Ohio offered the best fuel prices to its drivers among its neighboring states. Being one of the major cities of the state, Cincinnati enjoys significant benefits of this low tax fuel policy.
Ease of Access to Cars
WalletHub places Cincinnati at number sixteen in terms of its access to vehicles and maintenance. Since the cost of living in this growing economy is low, and the unemployment rate in the city is also lower than the national average, the city is one of the most affordable places in the country.
This, along with some of the best car insurance rates in the region, makes it really easy for residents to own a car. Therefore, if you are planning to move to the city or already live there but don’t own a vehicle, this is perhaps one of the easiest decisions to make.
Lenient State Laws
While state regulations are great for maintaining traffic order and providing road safety, an overly regulated environment can become a hindrance to enjoying the road life. Unlike many other states, Ohio doesn’t disappoint in this regard.
Even though the lawmakers of Buckeye State had already increased the speed limit from 65 mph to 70 mph in 2013, two years later, they were already reconsidering it to set it even higher at 75 mph. Additionally, other relaxations in driving laws of the state make it one of the friendlier states in terms of owning a car. And it stands true for the city of Cincinnati as well.
Travel and Leisure ranks Kansas City, Missouri at number nine in its list of America’s most underrated cities. The roasted beans from Oddly Correct, the great American barbecue from a gas station, its rich history and culture, all make it the next capital of cool.
Kansas has been a happening city ever since the early 1800s. The buzz in the town was one of the reasons why its counterpart on the other side of the river named itself the same. It tried to cash in on the city’s bustling tourist and industrial vibe, which it successfully did for quite some time.
Kansas City, KS may have confused tourists and businesses for some time, but its namesake in Missouri is still home to most of the downtown attractions. There is more to this. While Kansas state ranks 13th worst in terms of its drivers and overall driving culture, Missouri ranks as the 21st best in the same category. Kansas City, MO definitely has a significant share in this ranking. But what makes it such a great to drive?
Cheaper Gas Prices
According to a comparative analysis by the Tax Foundation published in early 2017, the state of Missouri had lower gas prices than most other states. This was primarily because the state of Missouri had the fourth-lowest gas tax in the country.
At 17.30 cents, the tax rate in Missouri was lower than most of its neighbors including, Kansas (24.03 cents) and Illinois (34.01 cents). Only Oklahoma fared better in neighbors and that too with a small margin. This means that it is cheaper to drive in Kansas City, MO than most other cities in the United States, and who doesn’t love that?
The weather in Kansas, MO remains nice throughout its four seasons. While the weather keeps changing from snowy winters to its humid summers, the mercury hardly touches the extremes.
We had the chance to chat with one of Dispatch's very first drivers, Nicole, to learn how she got started, why she drives with Dispatch and what makes this the perfect gig for her.
As one of America’s more progressive cities, Minneapolis was one of the first cities to implement a minimum wage rate for employees. When combined, Minneapolis and St. Paul form the largest metropolitan area known as the Twin Cities. The living standard in the metropolis is designed to provide comfort and a higher quality of life.
Statistics show Minneapolis’ employment in trade and transportation had increased to 2.9% in August 2018 as compared to March 2017 when it was 1.8%, while the unemployment rate has decreased from 3.2 to 2.6%.
Minneapolis Welcomes Professional Drivers!
Professional drivers enjoy Minneapolis’ commitment to employment laws. The state sets out rules for the number of hours different professional drivers are allowed to work in one go. Section 393.76 of the 49 CFR divides work hours into four separate statuses: On-duty, driving, off-duty and sleeper berth.
Controls set by the government aim to make working conditions more humane and sustainable. Employees are legally entitled to an off-duty period of 34 or more consecutive hours after working consecutively for seven to eight hours!
Increase in Non-farm Payroll = Economic Increase
Most economic growth statistics are based on metrics such as gross domestic product and the consumer price index. A key indicator for Minneapolis’ job market is the non-farm payroll. This data represents the workforce that is not employed in governmental agencies, non-profit organizations or household businesses such as farms.
The expansion in Minneapolis’ non-farm payroll statistics shows an increase in its secondary and tertiary industry. The shift away from the primary sector is an improvement for the citizens of Minneapolis. More jobs are emerging in the service sector which will prove to be financially beneficial for the economy as well the workforce.
Municipality-based Snow Ploughing
If you’ve never driven in snow, Minneapolis may or may not prove to be the best place to begin trying. Heavy snowfall blankets the streets and roads from January to March, making driving more tedious and dangerous.
However, every municipality in Minneapolis employs their own snowplows to help clear the ice off of roads. Additionally, many schools properly train professional drivers to maneuver their vehicles in the harshest of temperatures safely.
In an effort to reduce the number of cars on the roads of Minneapolis, the law has begun to fine households with more than 2 cars parked in their driveways. While many car enthusiasts have spoken out against this, the move is seen as practical and environment-friendly.
Remember when checking up on a task meant going through an entire drawer of files? Or how confirming a customer delivery meant calling the courier service multiple times a day? Yeah, I’d rather not.
Modern day businesses are now run with a swipe of your fingers. To stay ahead of the curve, companies are required to adapt to tech-smart operations. Doing this has been made significantly easier with the invention of apps. These apps have made it possible to manage, delegate, and keep track of the business as a whole. This article will look at the Top 3 applications that can help you save time while at work:
Mela is a project management app that brands itself as a ‘smart collaboration’ app, and it actually does what it says.
As a smart work application, Mela helps organizations speed their projects up by efficiently managing fieldwork – both online and offline.
Mela aims to negate modern day fieldwork issues that plague organizations and slow work down – causing a nuisance for managers and supervisors. The lack of communication leads to loss of clients’ trust and errors without the team managing to root out the cause. Mela simplifies and centralizes all information. A single platform from where everybody can collaborate, communicate, track information, and eventually – save precious time.
Additionally, Mela also offers data analytics which offer detailed insights that help users monitor important metrics and results related to their use. Mela is optimized for the use of every person in the chain of command: from supervisors and managers all the way to contractors and workers.
Providing speedy and timely product deliveries to customers always remains the forefront priority of any business.
Sadly enough, local deliveries are often a dilemma for business owners. They can either opt to buy a delivery vehicle which comes at a high cost or outsource packages to a courier service, risking being bound by their quality of service, which if subpar, can anger their own clientele.
Questions such as, ‘who manages the fleet’ and ‘how much money are we willing to spend’ should be at the forefront of your decision making strategy. Many companies will undertake the financial working needed to make these decisions but they forget to add in factors such as the operational nature of the business, future expansion plans and the expertise needed to efficiently manage a fleet.
This article lists the pros and cons that come with each available option and aims to help business owners make an informed decision. Although it is difficult to trust other companies with your operations, it is imperative that you trust those whose core business objective revolves around efficient logistics and fleet management.
Why Own a Fleet?
Most of the time, the nature of a company demands a fleet at hand, and other times fleet programs serve as an employee perk more than a business-related need. Other times fleet vehicles are needed to transport goods from one place to another. Additionally, advertising your brand becomes easier and can also be influenced through the make and type of the fleet.
Options in Fleet Management
Fleets can be purchased as a part of the current business or they can be outsourced to other companies that provide transportation and delivery as a service. A number of companies have come up recently offering a delivery service. The core business of these companies is in dealing with efficient delivery. Additionally, companies can own their own fleets and set up departments to run them effectively, but it will cost them more than a logistics company would.
Before looking up manufacturers and fleet programs that offer you the best dollar value sit down with your accounting department and draw up an estimated comparison between owning and leasing. You should base the comparison on:
- The difference in outsourcing and insourcing costs
- The monthly running costs of each option (e.g. payments, maintenance, insurance, gas salaries)
- Possible hiring of fleet manager/ setting up a department focused on fleet management
- And, nature of the fleet’s function
Since the financial aspect reigns over all components, companies tend to overlook features other than pricing. The decision to lease or own should be tied into your business culture and its long term objectives.
Companies that choose to own their own fleet have greater control over their expense sheet. Their costs are more transparent as everything is in their control. Outsourcing leads to a higher rate of dependency and companies have no control in how much is spent on their fleet and where the prevalent amount goes.
By owning and managing your own fleet, you have the ultimate say. You are able to select your drivers, the types of vehicles that are on the road and when and where they are heading.
For every car in your fleet you must have insurance to help cover liability costs such as equipment breakdown or accidents. Quality insurance takes a toll on the pocket, and procuring insurance for an entire fleet is not only a burden on the pocket but also the mind. Fleet insurance comes in many types and forms and one must be acquainted to them to be able to choose the best option. Additionally, worker’s compensation, in case of injury, is a whole other aspect to begin thinking about.
Operating inefficiently opens up companies to a multitude of risks from legal entities to employee safety. Due to the ever-evolving nature of technology and legal requirements, it is easy to miss out on the fine print.
If you are thinking of owning a fleet, we sincerely hope you have considered and allotted a space for them. Some companies with storage restrictions send their vehicles home with the employees. Employees may end up using the corporate vehicles for personal use, adding mileage and wear and tear which you will have to account for.
Lack of Control
Managing a fleet requires efficient route planning as well as job rotation and employee satisfaction, among others. A lack of the correct expertise needed can drive up costs and result in delivery chaos. By outsourcing, you can simply tell the logistics company of your wishes and they will implement it.
Decreased Cash Flow/Increased Overheads
Due to the additional purchasing, recruiting and operating of the fleet, companies that own their fleets will experience a decrease in cash flow. This can be especially problematic when there are bills to pay and the company is not liquid enough. Outsourcing can help drive down costs and do not blow a hole through your accounts, making them more appealing to stakeholders and your company’s monetary position.
Fleet Management Technology
Opting to collaborate with a company that deals in delivery allows you to make use of all the technology they apply into their management system. Owning a fleet will require you to invest in a transportation management system. Not only is such software expensive, you also need to learn how to navigate through them.
Increase in Capital Investment
Companies end up paying direct and indirect costs; pouring resources into a department that is far from their core competency. The capital investment is only apparent once the in-house fleet costs are separated from the other expenses. Outsourcing your fleet and all of its add-on responsibilities can visibly reduce your expenses. This frees up capital and precious resources which can be employed towards the firm’s long-term objectives.
Dispatch makes use of data analysis to create customized experiences for your customers through their screens, ensuring effective communication channels and optimized satisfaction. Our easy to use interface makes sure that businesses can navigate and order same-day delivery for their products with ease. The technology allows for you and your customers to have a fleet of vehicles in the palm of their hand. To learn more, visit Dispatch!
A lack of good management can prove to be a burden for a company’s bottom line, leaving unhappy customers and employees in its wake. Logistics professionals should view their roles as customer-facing and continually add value.
Having a logistics strategy can help you make informed decisions, increase error- response time, and flexibility in the process for unforeseen changes, saving up to 40% on logistics costs. As difficult as it may seem to choose the best practices for logistics management, here are the top five ways companies can optimize routes.
1. Freight Collect
Shipping companies usually engage in a practice known as ‘freight paid,’ in which suppliers pay for transportation costs. Switching to ‘freight collect,’ despite the consignee paying for the freight, comes with more advantages. It’s important to remember that the company which pays for shipment will not necessarily be responsible for transporting as well.