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Case Study: Building a digital platform to enable swift shipping for ecommerce 

Project: Develop an efficient shipping network, creating a superior ecommerce customer experience

Our client is a dynamic startup on a mission to bring enterprise-grade, blazing-fast logistics and sorting capabilities to small and mid-sized ecommerce retailers. They faced the challenge of building a platform to efficiently manage global shipments.  

Recognizing the pain points of US ecommerce retailers, the client aims to provide them with an affordable and fast 1-2-day shipping solution that rivals the delivery efficiency of major ecommerce brands, enhancing their consumer satisfaction through reliable and cost-effective package delivery. 

Challenge: Build a modern digital platform that significantly reduces ecommerce shipping times 

To accomplish their goal, this technology-first logistics provider envisioned a software platform that would enable a next-gen, faster, more reliable, and precise delivery network that easily integrates last-mile delivery. Ultimately, this solution would accelerate shipments, allowing retailers to focus on providing an exceptional customer experience. 

Driven by this mission, they approached HTEC to help them build a unified platform for storing shipment information to streamline ecommerce operations. Additionally, HTEC implemented a processing layer that determines optimal delivery routes to enable speedy delivery times typically reserved for ecommerce giants.  

Digital platform - Two people entering data into laptop and tablet

Solution: New scalable platform empowered by routing system and streamlined logistics capabilities  

HTEC designed and developed a new system using the recipient website, shipper portal, and an Android app to track and monitor the movement of vehicles between sorting centers, ensuring real-time visibility, streamlined logistics management, and integrations with multiple last-mile providers.  

The project evolved once the client recognized the need for an application extending beyond basic functionality. The vision expanded to include an application compatible with external devices, such as a scanner that scans packages with custom barcodes. The envisioned system streamlined warehouse operations by scanning external barcodes upon package entry, storing information in the platform, and generating unique barcodes for the client’s needs. 

As the system organically expanded, so did the client’s needs. The client wanted to gain a more comprehensive understanding of vehicle routes and how the distribution network could be used to pinpoint the closest and most efficient routes for the fleet.  

With the client’s expansion into a network of multiple centers, the team’s approach had to adapt to enhance the platform’s capabilities, ensuring it could robustly support the network. This included: 

  • Creating a routing system between centers 
  • Determining the most efficient route to the last-mile carrier 
  • Facilitating package distribution across the US for multiple sorting centers 
  • Establishing a seamless connection among all the centers, fostering a unified and cohesive network 

The result? A modern digital platform that empowers a reliable shipping network for ecommerce delivery. 

The entire journey, from system discovery to development, spanned nearly two years, ensuring a robust solution that addressed the client’s evolving needs. 

“HTEC’s Tech Excellence and Product Innovation offices, in collaboration with engineering, developed a platform of high-level efficacy, seamlessly operational across diverse distribution centers. The platform, the digital core that sets the delivery network in motion, is crucial to the client’s success, allowing them to fuel their global market expansion and rival the delivery efficiency of major ecommerce brands,”

– Igor Ličanin

Engineering and Delivery Manager at HTEC

Key Strengths

Scalability: The platform was designed and built to scale while maintaining seamless communication with external partners to enable the client to expand their sortation center network. 

Reliability: The team had to ensure the platform was secure and reliable, allowing smooth communication with external clients and facilitating package distribution. 

User-friendliness: Having faced the challenge of untrained warehouse personnel, the team had to make sure the platform was user-friendly (especially on handheld devices), easily understood, and operated by anyone, regardless of their tech expertise.  

Performance: Performance is paramount for the client. To process shipments within a strict 500-millisecond window, warehouse scanning and processing had to be lightning-fast and efficient. 

Success: A ubiquitous solution empowering US ecommerce retailers to move with the speed of global giants  

HTEC built the foundational core of the entire digital platform, allowing the client to focus on other priorities, including financing, online store negotiations, and final-mile carrier relationships. 

With this new platform, the client can now enable US ecommerce retailers to move with the speed of global giants and ensure more precise and reliable package delivery. This core functionality plays a vital role in the client’s establishment as a major player in the market, enabling them to provide a superior customer experience and expand their network footprint to serve new US geographies.  

Want to learn how to enhance your digital customer experience? Explore our Retail and Product & Platform Engineering capabilities.  

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