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Parcel Lockers

How Do Parcel Lockers Ease Urban Gridlock?

If you’re at the sending or receiving side of an item, it’s normal to be concerned about the cost of last-mile delivery in urban areas. It is believed to eat up more than half of the cost of transporting products. To lessen the burden on your bottom line it’s crucial to consider the way your supply chain is interconnected with the city grid. As well as the traffic which runs through it. It’s clear that you can’t control the way these systems function. However, you manage how well you manage them.

Parcel Lockers & Package Management 

Recently, we’ve studied parcel lockers at the Urban Freight Lab at the University of Washington Supply Chain Transportation and Logistics Centre. The lockers are an obvious extension of the moves you’ve previously made regarding consolidation as well as delivery volume in components. These are completely (or almost) within your control. If you’re in a warehouse, or on an industrial floor, a clever design reduces the amount of movement. And, consequently, time required to complete the task. The same concept applies for delivery of goods to the last mile in urban areas.

In a city that is crowded, delivery door-to-door to multiple addresses takes a lot more transport. On the other hand it takes more simply delivering to a single storage locker that serves many recipients. The use of lockers for parcels can help reduce the double burden of massive first delivery failure rates and long dwell times for trucks. For parcel receivers such issues can make you take longer to obtain the items you require. For transporters, their costs can be a major negative to the balance of the balance sheet.

What Study Says?

A study found that locker delivery cuts down on overall delivery time in the tower by 78 % as compared to traditional delivery. Also, there were zero delivery failures of the lock. Of course, lockers don’t always reduce delivery times by 78 percent. Our pilot recorded a scenario where the driver only had just one item to deliver, and returned to the loading dock following delivery. However, strategically placed lockers can offer significant time savings. So, how do they possibly not?

It’s also interesting that the pilot we ran was a collaborative project with companies like Kroger, Ford Motor Company and Nordstrom. Alongside carriers like UPS along with the U.S. Postal Service, these members of the Urban Freight Lab understand the essentiality of working with cities to address issues. Through the investigation of low-cost, high-impact solutions for companies that deliver products in urban environments. And for cities that are trying to manage parking spaces and curbs that are limited.


For an example, look for no more than the explosion of Parcel Lockers with Amazon-branded lockers at seven-Eleven stores for convenience. Whole Foods Markets, offices, universities and homes across the country. Lockers are clearly a great option to save money and analysts are predicting. The retailer will shift to lockers as well as hubs to reduce the soaring shipping costs.

In light of the time employees are wasting in sorting out packages and calling staff once items arrive. Businesses are looking for ways to manage deliveries more effectively. Here a smart parcel locker system or a package management software can help you greatly. Even large corporations with complex supply chains that depend on truckloads of transport may receive a flurry of single-use packages in the form of expensive expedited shipping things that can be controlled through lockers.

Lockers may not work for every business and won’t fit in every situation. In many instances they can improve the existing system and anything that opens up alternatives can be beneficial. The companies could also look into density drivers like pop-up pickup points (a low-tech alternative) and trucks to function as lockers that rove (a higher-tech option).

Bottom Line

The bottom line is that to ensure that supply chains are as efficient as possible. Supply chain professionals need to come up with innovative ideas for urban delivery of goods and navigate cities’ grid. Without new methods, congestion in cities will get more expensive for business. The companies that are considering the future of Parcel Lockers, for instance, are more likely to last and prosper.

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