What Does Optimized Routing REALLY
Many of our competitors use Microsoft®
Mappoint® software. This package does indeed optimize
routes, but if you don't understand precisely what this assertion
means, you could easily confuse this feature with the Command
Post 3000 dispatching engine's routing
system (which was awarded U.S. Patent No. 7,788,121 on August 31, 2010).
Mappoint® software is able to take an
EXISTING route you've already planned out and, in Microsoft's
words, "automatically reorder the route to create a shorter,
more efficient trip by optimizing the route. Optimizing changes
the order of the stops, but does not affect the start and
end points. It will not have an effect on trips with less
than four waypoints." Microsoft makes clear that YOU
must feed in the start & stop points, plus each "waypoint"
inbetween. What is submitted to the mechanic is first determined
by YOU. Systems that use Mappoint® then optimize the choices
YOU have already made.
THIS is what is meant when other packages say they provide
"optimized routing." You must first predigest the
raw job list and make assignments to your mechanics. Then
the routes get optimized as a final step.
Post 3000 predetermines
what jobs should be given to which mechanics
based on optimized routing. Command
Post 3000 handles this function. You don't.
The optimization occurs first, and the
jobs are allocated to the mechanics based
on the criteria you've applied, resulting
in the best optimization, period. Other
packages usually have you manually allocate
the calls to the mechanics first, and then
they reorder that subset of calls to get
the best route, BASED
ON THE MANUAL ALLOCATION YOU'VE PREVIOUSLY
APPLIED. You can still
get poor results, due to the "garbage
in, garbage out" phenomenon. Command
Post 3000 creates the correct job assignments
from the raw job list, already optimized.
Ask the competition whether
their software correctly assigns raw jobs
to the right technicians at the right time
of day and sets up the correct start points,
end points, and waypoints automatically,
using optimized routing from start to finish.
It's worth pinning them down on this, because
unless yours is the kind of business that
truly requires you to manually predetermine
job distribution to your techs (like certain
trucking and delivery services do), your
dispatchers will find themselves literally
closing the barn door after the horses
have run away.
Think about YOUR industry and YOUR company,
and then ask the right questions when buying
your dispatching package. And feel free
to call SDS (512.422.3040) to have one of our reps
explain how full optimization will
work for you.
Microsoft® and MapPoint® are registered
trademarks of Microsoft Corporation