One of the most common problems within municipal waste management are missed collections. What seems like a small mistake has a major impact on several levels. It is not only costly for the company but also negatively affects the relationship with customers. Therefore, it is important to identify why missed collections happen and how they can be avoided by just using a few preventive solutions.
Reasons for missed collections
The most common reason is also immediately the simplest: the container was not out or the road was blocked. As soon as there are changes in planning due to holidays, bad weather or deliberate changes, things often go wrong. Customers get confused and forget to take out their container.
Another reason could be that containers are overflowing or too heavy which could result in a waste collector not collecting the bins. Since customers pay for specific quantities and sizes of containers, an operator may choose not to collect an overflowing container. Adding to this, if the bin’s lid was not closed or the bin was damaged, a waste collector may also refuse to collect it.
Lastly, if your container is contaminated, drivers may decide not to collect waste from such bins for their own health and safety reasons. To avoid this, proper measures should be communicated to your customers about what can and cannot be recycled.
These are a couple of reasons why a driver may not pick up a container. But customers often don’t think that way. Without the right technology to document the reason for a missed stop, they will contact the waste operation and demand that their missed container be picked up. But it is an expensive solution to go back and make these missed collections. At the same time, the relationship with customers can be damaged when carriers decide not to return. Could there be a more sustainable solution? Yes there is.
How to prevent them?
In order minimize the chances of missed collections, the following technologies can come in handy:
Use mobile in-cab technology
It all starts with documenting containers that are not out, soiled, damaged or blocked. Drivers can submit tickets for any problems encountered, which are transferred instantly to the back office. When confusion or discussion then arises with the customer, evidence can be provided as to why the container was not collected. It saves both parties a lot of hassle.
Customer self-service app
A customer self-service app is designed to strengthen the relationship and communication with your customers. Customers complete requests in 3 minutes or less, at any time of the day. The portal gives your customers access to all their own account information; notification of schedule changes, receive automated messages, request additional empties, change/add containers, repairs/cleaning containers to and pay for them in-app. It ensures streamlined communication as it uses proactive messaging for any service interruptions.
Waste containers can be automatically identified by RFID tags. The RFID antennas and RFID readers in the vehicles communicate when a bin has been serviced. In this way, collections can be validated and provide proof of service to customers to increase service level quality. In addition, RFID matching minimizes interaction between drivers and the system in the cab, reducing human error. The system can detect irregularities and alert the driver if he empties a container not listed on the route.
These technological solutions will ensure that the number of missed collections will drop drastically while improving customer loyalty and communication.
Want to say goodbye to missed collections and strengthen your customer relationship at the same time? Don’t hesitate to contact WasteHero HERE to implement the above techniques within your company.