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Transportation Services Company Plans Routes Via our API

March 24, 2020

TransMet found itself at a crossroads as it transitioned from old delivery planning software that no longer met its needs. As a provider of transportation services for the print media industry, route efficiency was a key element to the company’s success in the Montreal, Quebec, metropolitan area.
Peter Stuart, TransMet operations and project manager, saw an opportunity in creating a custom software solution to support the company’s delivery services.
The old software used Roadnet to create routes, but the company’s license with Roadnet expired. Peter took a new approach by using the company’s database to create routes using the MyRouteOnline API.
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MyRouteOnline API

The API is a no-graphical user interface (GUI), representational state transfer (REST), javascript object notation (JSON) API Web-Service. It is useful for developers wishing to use the full set of the MyRouteOnline route-planning optimization capabilities without involving the MyRouteOnline UI.
The Canadian transportation services company had already been using MyRouteOnline’s routing services for about five years. But in the autumn 2019, TransMet began testing the MyRouteOnline API in its new custom software, which then would seamlessly create routes from addresses stored in the software.
“We worked out all the kinks throughout the fall,” Peter said. “Then we deployed it on January 1, 2020. We haven’t looked back since.”

Seamless Transition

Route planning is a big job, as TransMet creates routes of 350 daily stops for 10-12 drivers. Drivers tend to have their own geographic region that stays consistent, although the stops do change. Each route includes selected addresses, which automatically go to the MyRouteOnline Route Planner via the API for route planning.
The change was seamless for the drivers, who receive the manifest just like they did previously. In fact, Peter ran some tests and found the results were almost identical to the old software. That made the transition almost invisible to everyone else. It also still gives drivers some flexibility to adjust routes on the fly.
“Our drivers know their routes,” Peter explained. “We want the same drivers to go back to the same places, because it’s much more economical when they know the area well.”

Significant Time Savings

The true difference for TransMet is the significant time savings—and related costs—in creating the routes.
“Our old software needed almost a full-time position to create routes,” Peter explained. “There was no way to save a route, so we spent a lot of time rerunning the routes. It was very time consuming. It also required a lot of manual intervention that made it annoying. Now one person plans all our routes in a couple of hours a week.”
Peter also appreciated his experience with MyRouteOnline to get the project up and running in a timely manner.
“You have to have the right programmer who knows what they are doing,” he said. “I had a guy who is excellent, and the MyRouteOnline support person was excellent. Once my programmer understood how it works, he had complete control over it and could make it do what he wants.”
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