Project: Computerised Routing and Scheduling For Efficient Logistics

Reference: GPG 273

Last update: 12/01/2004 15:39:01


This Guide contains:

- A summary of the benefits of using Computerised Vehicle Routing and Scheduling (CVRS)

- Quantification of the actual benefits from a survey of CVRS users, plus more detailed individual case studies from companies that have successfully introduced this technology

- An explanation of how the different types of CVRS work

- Guidance on the process of selecting and introducing CVRS

This Guide is intended to help anyone engaged in distribution planning and considering using CVRS for the first time. However, it does not describe the features of individual products or compare their respective functionality and quality.


This Guide is Number 273 in the Good Practice Guide series. The Guide will help those involved in the distribution industry decide whether introducing computerised vehicle routing and scheduling (CVRS) technology will be worthwhile for them.

This Guide describes the types of computerised vehicle routing and scheduling systems available and the benefits of using them. Computerised delivery schedules are still not in widespread use in the distribution industry, particularly among smaller operators. However, those that are using them report improvements in operating efficiency, reduced fuel and administration costs and improved customer service.

By automating complex decision-making processes, computerised vehicle routing and scheduling systems will bring many benefits, e.g. optimising use of resources, reducing planning time often from days to hours, and make it easier to accommodate last-minute orders and re-evaluate routes rapidly, all of which will bring cost benefits.

Computerised vehicle routing and scheduling systems can be adapted to the needs of distribution networks, whether large companies making similar distributions every week or companies where home delivery is the main business.

A sophisticated auto-scheduling system can provide accurate, mapped routes, taking into account vehicles, drivers, compatible loads and customer delivery constraints - but, even the most powerful decision support tool needs an experienced distribution professional to make it work.


AEA Technology Environment
Harwell Business Centre, Didcot, Oxfordshire, OX11 0QJ
+44 (0)1235 432201

Freight Transport Association
Hermes House, St John's Road, Tunbridge Wells, Kent, TN4 9UZ

Contract details

Cost to the Department: £30,000.00

Actual start date: 01 April 2000

Actual completion date: 30 September 2000


Good Practice Guide 273
Author: Freight Transport Association
Publication date: 01/09/2000
Source: EnergyEfficiency Best Practice programme
More information:

Summary of results

  1. The Guide provides the summary of benefits of using CVRS. It also gives guidance on the process of selecting and introducing CVRS.