“The Last Mile” can account for up to 50% of the delivery cost to the courier delivery company. Intelligent parcel and package lockers are here to close the gap. 

With e-commerce, parcel and package deliveries growing by more than 25% year over year coupled with a dramatic increase in multifamily apartment housing (37% of the US population renting – over 111 million residents), it’s easy to see the demand for more efficient and convenient parcel and package delivery systems. Of all the applications for electronic lockers including guest rental systems, intelligent lockers, asset management lockers and retailer click and collect systems, it is parcel delivery that is spearheading the industry growth.

According to global courier ParcelHero, 12% of deliveries are unsuccessful at the first attempt.  These attempts usually result in a card being left with instructions for arranging another delivery attempt or for the customer to arrange collection from a depot. Either way it costs time and money and detracts from the customer experience. This affects both renters and owners. Deliveries not requiring a signature are typically left on the doorstep – the insecure nature of this is obvious. Not only is the package at risk from theft, it also signals to those with nefarious intentions that there is a good chance the resident is away from home.

Handling resident packages and parcels is one of the top issues facing apartment managers today. Some apartments are now refusing to accept packages due to liability, package storage and the significant waste of labor. It’s a problem year-round and especially during busy holiday periods. During Black Friday and Cyber Monday parcel deliveries can peak at a burgeoning 5x times usual volume.

The last mile can account for up to 50% of the delivery cost to the courier delivery company. Naturally they’re interested in reducing fragmented and wasted home deliveries into a single consolidated drop and pick-up option. Intelligent parcel and package lockers are the obvious solution to the numerous problems associated with the costly last mile of the delivery.

Many of the major delivery companies have already begun implementing electronic lockers as part of their delivery solution. Retailers such as Amazon have electronic lockers that are available in most neighborhoods. UPS has committed to the technology and, as the Wall Street Journal recently reported, will increase their shop Access Points from a few thousand to over 20,000 in the coming months.

Electronic parcel may contain between 40 to 200 individual electronic locker compartments with a control unit that allows each compartment to be opened by someone with the proper credentials. The lockers are made available in different sizes to suit common parcels so mixed configurations can be customized to maximize space utility.

Electronic lockers can also be conveniently located in areas that have longer business hours – such as shopping centers, supermarket car lots and gas station forecourts.

Electronic Lockers represent a wide range of benefits:

• Retailers: potential for increased sales from better delivery service

• Carriers: cost savings from better consolidation and improved delivery success rates

• Consumers: increased convenience and less risk

• The environment: benefits from reducing the number of delivery van miles driven

Not all electronic lockers are made equal, however. Here’s what one should consider when sourcing the right electronic locker solution.

First of all, system quality is paramount. Having the system with high uptime availability and minimal maintenance requirements is vital. The system should be robust enough to ensure security and the software should have built-in failsafe functionality.

And then there’s the mechanical construction of the lockers. From doors, to hinges and locks – these systems are in constant use. Construction is not the place to cut corners.

Electrical and electronic sub-systems should be reliable and properly rated for safety and protection according to local regulations. And the software control and data recording system should run on a stable platform ensuring reliable operation and security of data.

Remote support should be available 24/7. With quality construction there should be little need for onsite maintenance. Any minor items can be addressed by location maintenance personnel.

And the electronic lockers should be simple and easy to use. Delivery agents, residents and consumers need to deposit, collect and return their goods 24/7. The user interface should be intuitive with on screen help functions that will guide the users through the process.

Of course, when considering electronic locker solutions, there’s no better place to turn to than American Locker. Better customer experience. Better business experience. Our years of innovative American manufacturing have led us to create the widest range of customized solutions in the parcel locker industry.

Invented here. Made here. That’s American Ingenuity.