Developing the Last Mile of a Parcel Delivery Service Concept for Consumers

last-mileThe purpose of this thesis was to develop the last mile of a parcel delivery service concept for consumers with DHL Express used as the case company. The aim was to study how the current last mile of a parcel delivery service is being operated, what kinds of characteristics does it include and what are the differences between consumers’ and company’s perceptions of the service.

The structure of the thesis consists of an introduction to the thesis, presentation of the case company and logistics, theoretical framework, research methodology, collection and analysis of the empirical data, empirical results, and conclusions. The theoretical framework includes concepts that are related to logistic services, introductions of service concepts, service process, and business process, and descriptions of user involvement, user research, user experience, co-creation and value co-creation.

The empirical research of the thesis was conducted by following a service design process. The main empirical data collection method was a sentence completion form. Observations, contextual interviews and a design workshop were used as complimentary methods. Among 40 consumers who were approached with the sentence completion form, 23 decided to complete
it. The empirical data was analysed through content and statistical analyses. During the creation and reflection phases, a SWOT analysis and a storyboard were used.

As an outcome, an improved last mile of the DHL Express parcel delivery service concept was created and presented to the company together with recommendations for desirable actions. The results of this investigation revealed that the consumers are mostly satisfied with the service concept. However, these are certain aspects of the concept that will need to be
improved. The main development targets are related to both information flow and the actual delivery of goods.

Following the results of this thesis, DHL Express is now starting the implementation phase and putting the recommendations for improvement into practice. Some of the smaller changes have already been made and the more significant ones will be first presented to the headquarters in order to receive the necessary approval.


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