Mixed Fleet Route Optimization With Custom Vehicle Capacity Profiles

Businesses use different types of vehicles to accommodate their unique last mile routing business requirements. You may have cars, vans, trucks, and other vehicles in your fleet with different loading capacities. For instance, planning routes for three vehicles with different load-carrying capacities, multiple addresses with different requirements, and different destination types for pickup and delivery. That’s millions of possible routing scenarios. With Route4Me’s Mixed Fleet Route Planning Add-On, you can automatically optimize the most profitable routes for multiple vehicle types with different loading and carrying capacities.

Specifically, Mixed Fleet Routing enables you to maximize the capacity of each vehicle in your fleet and avoid underloading or overloading. The dynamic load capacity of vehicles is calculated on the fly for pickup and delivery destinations, allowing you to fit more addresses into each route. Additionally, use Driver Skills and Vehicle Attributes with Mixed Fleet routing to solve even more complex routing challenges. Learn more about Driver Skills and Vehicle Attributes.

With Route4Me's Mixed Fleet Route Planning Add-On, you can automatically optimize the most profitable routes for multiple vehicle types with different loading and carrying capacities.

 

 

Mixed Fleet Route Optimization – Route Planning Steps With Mixed Vehicle Capacity

To optimize routes with multiple destinations for vehicles with different load capacities, follow the steps below:

  1. Create Vehicle Capacity Profiles with custom load capacity for weight, volume, number of items, or maximum allowed revenue.
  2. Add your capacity profiles to one or multiple vehicles in your fleet.
  3. Import addresses with order details and required vehicle capacity into the route planner.
  4. Route4Me automatically distributes addresses across your fleet, maximizing the capacity of each available vehicle.
  5. Dispatch optimized routes with automatically assigned vehicles to the Mobile Driver App.

Route4Me matches the required capacity for every delivery or pickup address with the available dynamic capacity of your mixed vehicle fleet and plans the most optimal dynamic capacity routes.

 

Capacity Profiles – Create And Manage Vehicle Capacity Templates

To plan routes for vehicles with different load capacities, you need to create Vehicle Capacity Profiles. Then, Route4Me will automatically compute the capacity of each vehicle based on its profile and create routes that maximize the capacity of each vehicle. Additionally, you can add the same Vehicle Capacity Profile to multiple vehicles.

To create a new Vehicle Capacity Profile, go to “Team” then “Vehicles” from the Navigation Menu and click the Edit Icon next to any vehicle. Then, scroll down and click the “Manage Capacity Profiles” button to go to the “Vehicle Capacity Profiles” page.

To plan routes for vehicles with different load capacities, you need to create Vehicle Capacity Profiles. Then, Route4Me will automatically compute the capacity of each vehicle based on its profile and create routes that maximize the capacity of each vehicle.

 

Next, click the “Create New Capacity Profile” button and enter your preferred maximum capacity settings to create a new Capacity Profile. Once you’ve created one or multiple profiles, you can manage them on the “Vehicle Capacity Profiles” page. Click the “Edit” icon to update the parameters of a Vehicle Capacity Profile. Or, click the “Delete” icon to remove a profile.

Once you've created one or multiple profiles, you can manage them on the Vehicle Capacity Profiles page.

 

Add Capacity Profiles To Fleet Vehicles

Next, you can add your custom Vehicle Capacity Profiles to your fleet vehicles. To do so, go to “Team” and “Vehicles” from the Navigation Menu and click the Edit Icon next to the preferred vehicle. Then, scroll to the bottom of the Vehicle Settings panel and select the preferred profile from the “Capacity Profile” dropdown menu. Accordingly, once you’ve added a Vehicle Capacity Profile to a vehicle, this vehicle automatically becomes available for Mixed Fleet Route Optimization. Furthermore, if a vehicle doesn’t have a capacity profile, this vehicle will not be available for Mixed Fleet Route Optimization.

Add capacity profiles to fleet vehicles. Once you've added a Vehicle Capacity Profile to a vehicle, this vehicle automatically becomes available for Mixed Fleet Route Optimization.

 

Plan Routes And Select Vehicles With Capacity Profiles

Once you’ve created custom Vehicle Capacity Profiles and added them to your vehicles, you can plan routes with your mixed fleet. To do so, import addresses with Cube, Weight, Revenue, and Pieces capacity requirements. Additionally, specify which addresses are pickup or delivery destinations. Then, select vehicles with your preferred capacity profiles. Route4Me will automatically analyze all imported addresses, required vehicle capacity, and available vehicle capacity. The system will distribute all addresses with their capacity requirements across the selected vehicles, maximizing the capacity of each vehicle.

To plan routes with mixed fleet vehicles, go to”Routes” and “Plan New Route” from the Navigation Menu. Select “Upload a File” or “Import Data“. Additionally, learn more about Route4Me’s spreadsheet formatting requirements.

Plan routes by uploading a CSV route spreadsheet or import a route data spreadsheet from the cloud.

 

Enable Mixed Fleet Routing With Capacity Profile Vehicles In Optimization Profiles

When planning routes, Route4Me prompts you to select an Optimization Profile after selecting your method for importing addresses. To enable Mixed Fleet Route Optimization in Optimization Profiles, click the “Manage Profiles” button. Alternatively, go to “Routes” and “Optimization Profiles” from the Navigation Menu.

Open Optimization Profiles before adding addresses when planning routes with Constraints.

 

On the Optimization Profiles screen, click the Three-dot Icon next to the preferred route and select “Edit” from the menu. Alternatively, you can create a new Optimization Profile by clicking the “Create New Profile” button.

To add Service Time to an Optimization Profile, you can edit the respective profile or create a new Optimization Profile.

 

Then, on the “Create Optimization Profile” or “Configure Optimization Profile” screen, go to the “Optimization” tab. In the “Mixed Vehicles Routing” section, check the box labeled “Use vehicles with various capacity profiles“. Then, click the “Create Profile” or “Update Profile” button to save your settings. NOTE: The “Maximum Number of Routes” constraint is required for using Mixed Vehicles Routing in Optimization Profiles.

Enable vehicles with various capacity profiles in Optimization Profiles to reuse optimization templates for planning mixed vehicle fleet routes with capacity requirements and optimal distribution.

 

Select Capacity Profile Vehicles In Optimization Settings

Alternatively, to enable Mixed Vehicles Optimization using manual optimization settings, click the “Skip” button when prompted to select an Optimization Profile to access the Optimization Settings window.

To access manual Optimization Settings when planning routes, click the Skip button when prompted to select an Optimization Profile.

 

Then, go to the “Optimization” tab and select “Multiple Drivers”. After that, in the “Mixed Vehicles Fleet” section, check the box labeled “Enable Mixed Vehicles Fleet“. Select the preferred vehicles you want to plan routes for by checking the respective boxes. Additionally, use the “Filter” field to search for your preferred vehicles. NOTE: The “Maximum Route Duration” constraint in the “Business Rules” section is required when planning multiple routes with manual optimization settings.

Enable Mixed Vehicles Fleet in Optimization Settings and select the preferred vehicles you want to plan routes for by checking the respective boxes.

 

Format Spreadsheets – Add Capacity Constraints For Route Import

After selecting an Optimization Profile or adjusting optimization settings, upload or import your spreadsheet with addresses and respective capacity requirements. Along with the mandatory “Address” column, add the “Address Type” column. Set the destination type for each address, either “PICKUP” or “DELIVERY” for addresses with capacity requirements. Then, add optional columns for Cube, Weight, Pieces, and Revenue capacity requirements for each address in the spreadsheet. Learn more about Route4Me’s spreadsheet requirements.

Plan mixed fleet routes by uploading routing spreadsheets with capacity requirements for every route address with Delivery or Pickup destination types.

 

Next, after uploading your route spreadsheet, ensure all column headers are matched correctly. Specifically, make sure the “Address Destination Type” column contains the “DELIVERY” or “PICKUP” destination types along with other headers. Then, click the “Continue to Review” button to proceed to address geocoding and verification.

After uploading your route spreadsheet, ensure all column headers are matched correctly.

 

Mixed Fleet Routes – Optimized Routes With Vehicle Capacity Profiles

Route4Me automatically distributes addresses with specific capacity requirements across all selected vehicles with their respective load capacity limitations. Accordingly, Route4Me maximizes the available capacity of each vehicle and plans the optimal number of routes. Additionally, the system accounts for the Pickup and Delivery destination types. Dynamic vehicle capacity changes after each vehicle loading and unloading operation. When destinations can’t be included into optimized routes because they exceed the available loading capacity of the selected vehicles, these addresses are added to Unrouted Destinations.

The Routes Maps enables you to view how addresses with capacity requirements were distributed across the selected vehicles. Additionally, in the Route Summary Table, you can see the totals of the Cube, Pieces, Revenue, and Weight loaded onto the selected vehicles. Moreover, you can view the utilization percentages of your routes. You can also use the Dynamic Route Manifest to check the individual capacity of each assigned vehicle on each planned route.

The Routes Maps enables you to view how addresses with capacity requirements were distributed across the selected vehicles. Additionally, in the Route Summary Table, you can see the total capacities of the selected vehicles and capacity utilization.

 

Furthermore, Route4Me enables you to dispatch routes to your drivers in real-time. Specifically, you can dispatch scheduled routes from the Web Platform to Route4Me’s Android Route Planner and iOS Route Planner mobile apps. To dispatch a route to the driver mobile app, assign the route to the user. Then, the route will become available on the user’s app in real-time. Furthermore, you can track drivers on the map, view team activity, and more.

Route4Me enables you to dispatch routes to your drivers in real-time. Specifically, you can dispatch scheduled routes from the Web Platform to Route4Me's Android Route Planner and iOS Route Planner mobile apps.

 

Mixed Fleet Optimization With Driver Skills And Vehicle Attributes

In addition to maximizing your fleet vehicle capacity with Mixed Fleet Routing, you can solve even more complex routing scenarios with Driver Skills and Vehicle Attributes. Add skills to drivers, attributes to vehicles, and required skills and attributes to destinations. When planning Mixed Fleet routes with Driver Skills and Vehicle Attributes, Route4Me automatically accounts for the required skills and attributes of destinations while maximizing the capacity of your fleet. This helps you avoid the task of going through billions of possible combinations. Additionally, learn more about Driver Skills and Vehicle Attributes routing.

Optimize routes with required Driver Skills, Vehicle Attributes and Mixed Vehicles Fleet capacity to overcome routing complexity.

 

Mixed Fleet Optimization VS Homogeneous Fleet Optimization

Additionally, there’s a huge difference in planning and optimizing routes for mixed and homogenous fleets. A Homogenous Fleet is a fleet of vehicles with similar vehicle parameters such as load capacity, weight, height, length, etc. A Homogeneous Fleet is the opposite of a Mixed Fleet, comprised of different vehicles with different parameters. When Mixed Vehicles Fleet is not enabled, Homogeneous Fleet Optimization applies a single collection of optimization constraints to all imported addresses via Business Rules. With Mixed Fleet Optimization, Route4Me can apply multiple collections of optimization constraints to all imported addresses with routing business rules. A collection of optimization constraints is a set of routing Business Rules as maximum Weight, RevenueCubic Volume , and Pieces per vehicle.

Using the Homogeneous Fleet Optimization for a Mixed Fleet can lead to underutilization of the capacity of your vehicles. This way, you may end up using too many vehicles, paying too many drivers, using too much fuel, having unrouted destinations, and experiencing other expensive routing inefficiencies. Route4Me’s Mixed Fleet Optimization will help you ensure that each vehicle in your fleet is used to its maximum capacity and you can reach more destinations with fewer vehicles.

Click to Download the Route4Me Mixed Fleet Optimization SDK

When Mixed Vehicles Fleet is not enabled, Homogeneous Fleet Optimization applies a single collection of optimization constraints to all imported addresses via Business Rules.

 

Mixed Fleet FAQs – Frequently Asked Mixed Vehicle Capacity Questions

Below, you can find some of the questions our customers ask us about Mixed Fleet Routing and Optimization for fleets that have vehicles with different load capacities.

To enable the Mixed Fleet Feature, you simply need to add the Mixed Fleet Add-On to your existing subscription using the Feature Manager. Furthermore, if you don’t have a Route4Me account, you can get a free route planner software trial for 7 days.

In short, a Mixed Fleet is any fleet of commercial vehicles that have different load-carrying capacities. Accordingly, Mixed Fleets can include different types of vehicles, such as regular cars, vans, light-duty trucks, heavy-duty trucks, etc.

Opposite to a Mixed Fleet, a Homogenous Fleet is a fleet of vehicles that have identical load-carrying capacity. Accordingly, when optimizing routes for a Homogenous Fleet, you need to account for the same load capacity for all vehicles.

Briefly, Route4Me enables you to use all types of vehicles for planning and optimizing mixed vehicle routes. For example, you can plan routes for minivans, sport utility vehicles, pickup trucks, panel trucks, box trucks, vans, tank trucks, refrigerator trucks, garbage trucks, and many more.

Overall, all you need to do is create custom Vehicle Capacity Profiles and add them to your vehicles, and Route4Me will take care of the rest.

Currently, Route4Me supports the Cube, Weight, Revenue, and Pieces vehicle capacity constraints for Mixed Fleet Routing. Accordingly, you can specify these capacity constraints when creating Custom Vehicle Capacity Profiles.

All in all, there are no limitations on the vehicle types you can use for Mixed Fleet Routing. Thus, you can use commercial vehicles and regular vehicles to optimize capacity routes.

Of course, you can use Route4Me’s Commercial Vehicle & Truck Routing with Mixed Fleet Routing. Specifically, you can create profiles with physical parameters for your commercial vehicles and then add custom load-carrying capacity profiles to your fleet. Thus, you can optimize routes for commercial vehicles based on their size and weight parameters, as well as available loading capacity.

Route4Me’s route optimization engine can account for pickups and deliveries. Accordingly, at certain route stops, the load capacity of the given vehicle will change depending on the loaded and unloaded goods.

For this reason, you can use the Dynamic Route Manifest, which shows the capacity of the given vehicles after each pickup, loading, delivery, or unloading.

Yes, Route4Me’s mobile apps for delivery drivers can show the load capacity parameters required for each loaded and unloaded order. Specifically, tap on the preferred stop on the mobile app and then select “Stop Info” from its menu. Next, scroll to the Cube, Weight, Revenue, and Pieces sections to see the respective required capacity.

Yes, you can add the same Vehicle Capacity Profile to multiple vehicles in your fleets. Additionally, you can check the capacity profile parameters of the vehicle when you are assigning it to the route

Currently, you can create an unlimited number of Vehicle Capacity Profiles for your fleet.

 

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About Route4Me

Route4Me has over 40,000 customers globally. Route4Me's Android and iPhone mobile apps have been downloaded over 2 million times since 2009. Extremely easy-to-use, Route4Me's apps create optimized routes, synchronize routes to mobile devices, enable communication with drivers and customers, offer turn-by-turn directions, delivery confirmation, and more. Behind the scenes, Route4Me's operational optimization platform combines high-performance algorithms with data science, machine learning, and big data to plan, optimize, and analyze routes of almost any size in real-time.