Delivery firm replaces barcode scanners with mobile devices for increased operational efficiency and lower total cost of ownership
One of the UK’s largest parcel delivery firms, Hermes UK, has taken a major step towards achieving its digital transformation goal by implementing mobile barcode scanning and augmented reality (AR) technology from Scandit, the mobile computer vision experts.
Hermes UK has deployed Scandit’s high-performance barcode scanning on smartphones for verification and proof of delivery. Over the next three years, Hermes UK is working towards replacing more than 15,000 costly, dedicated barcode scanners with smartphones loaded with a Scandit-powered Android app. Couriers will scan items, record an electronic signature, verify an ID and take a picture of where a package has been left – all done with smartphones. The new technology saves time and money, streamlines the entire delivery process, and provides a mobile platform for rapid roll-out of future service improvements that further enhance operations and customer experience.
During the migration period, Hermes UK couriers will also begin using additional Scandit software features, MatrixScan and augmented reality (AR) overlays. This means couriers will scan multiple barcodes at once to search and find a specific item really quickly and view parcel/customer information overlaid on the device screen. Hermes is currently implementing the use of MatrixScan-AR overlays for code identification, delivering efficiency and productivity gains.
“A key component of our digital transformation strategy, known as Digital Futures, is to replace dedicated barcode scanners with smartphones that provide couriers with real-time data to improve the customer experience,” said Chris Ashworth, CIO from Hermes UK. “ Enabling couriers to carry a smartphone not only helps us to improve operational efficiency, but also improves the working lives of couriers who can now use their own phone, or a Hermes provided phone, rather than having to carry a barcode scanner.”
“The project with Scandit has gone incredibly smoothly so far,” Ashworth continued. “We’ve been able to add new mobile handsets and retire old barcode scanners gradually, ensuring that there is no disruption to our operations. We look forward to working closely with Scandit to implement more functionalities such as augmented reality and MatrixScan once this stage of our digital transformation is complete.”
Hermes UK is one of the biggest consumer couriers in the country, delivering more than 335 million parcels each year for 80% of the UK’s top 100 retailers including NEXT, ASOS, BooHoo and John Lewis. The company is currently undertaking an ambitious digital transformation project with the goal of delivering better and more personalised services for its customers.
“The customer experience doesn’t end once a shopper has clicked the ‘buy now’ button,” said Samuel Mueller, CEO and co-founder of Scandit. “Third party couriers like Hermes are an extension of brands; as such, any delivery problems can undo all the work done by a retailer in nurturing the customer relationship. At the same time, it’s an opportunity to strengthen that relationship further. We’re proud to be helping Hermes UK do just this for its retail partners.”