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Route Optimization

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Route optimization example The Route Optimization capability in Last Mile Fleet Solution is a toolkit that incorporates Routes Preferred API, Directions API, and Distance Matrix API. It offers enterprise-level features that solve the problem of finding the optimal order for drivers to complete their tasks.

What can you do with route optimization?

You can optimize routing across your fleet or fine-tune the task order for particular drivers. You can build an interface to allow your drivers and fleet manager to visually edit routes.

Why use route optimization?

When you manage a delivery fleet, it's crucial that you optimize driver routes in order to meet consumer expectations. Route optimization ensures that your drivers drive the most efficient route possible—making stops and executing tasks in the optimal order. Your customers will be delighted because their orders arrive as quickly and as inexpensively as possible. Route optimization simplifies the effort needed to ensure that you meet this goal.

  • Improve driver task productivity — Ensure that your drivers get optimal routes, including real-time traffic updates. This allows you to avoid delays due to congestion.
  • Improve consumer experience — Provide your consumers with more precise expected delivery times.

How to use Route Optimization

This section describes a typical process for using Route Optimization.

1. Assign tasks across your entire fleet.

Route optimization fleet example Most fleets begin each day by assigning all required tasks for the day across their driver fleet. You can use different approaches for assignment, including driver territories or a route optimization solver. Last Mile Fleet Solution does not directly address the task assignment problem. Instead, it can take the route plan from any current solution you use.

If you've developed your own route solver, you can use the Routes Preferred API ComputeRouteMatrix method to estimate the distance and duration of a route for multiple origins and destinations. The ComputeRouteMatrix lets you use the same traffic and routing algorithms used by other Last Mile Fleet Solution products. It has several advantages over the Distance Matrix API. See Routes Preferred ComputeRouteMatrix for more details.

For fleet-wide optimization, Google Cloud provides the Cloud Fleet Routing API. It has the ability to scale to very high delivery volumes and allows customization for a variety of constraints, such as time windows, package weights, and vehicle capacities. It makes use of Google Maps routing data, so when you use it in tandem with Last Mile Fleet Solution, it promotes predictability in your operations, from planning to execution.

Route optimization fleet example

2. Fine-tune the task order for particular drivers.

Once drivers have been assigned their tasks, you can optimize the sequence in which they perform them. You might do this for a number of reasons, such as for territory assignments where you want to optimize the task order for each territory. Or, you might update routes to add pickups or adapt to traffic congestion. For this, you'll use the Directions API, which lets you optimize up to 25 stops. For more information, see the Directions API.

For optimizing more than 25 stops per route, Google provides the Routes Preferred ComputeRoutes method. For more information, see the Routes Preferred ComputeRoutes and contact your Google sales representative to discuss availability.

3. Allow drivers or the fleet manager to directly edit routes individually.

Some fleet operators want their drivers or their fleet manager to visualize and edit routes directly within a user interface. Use the Maps SDK to enable the ability to display the route from the Directions API, and then see how the route is affected based on changes to the stop sequence. Last Mile Fleet Solution Fleet Engine supports this use-case by enabling you to input changes to the driver route at any time. For more information on customizing routes in your map, see Maps SDK for Javascript, Maps SDK for Android, and Maps SDK for iOS.

For more information for routes based on driver input, see the Fleet Engine documentation.