Podfather: Reflecting on the year that was 2020

18 Dec 2020
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As December draws to a close we are feeling in a reflective mood here at Podfather. 2020 will forever be known as the year that saw us all tackle the COVID-19 crisis. It has been tough for us all, our staff, our customers, our suppliers, yet as we reflect on the most unprecedented 12 months there are a few positive glimmers of happiness and hope here at Podfather. So, as we all look to hang up our stockings for the festive break, we wanted to share a few of the highlights that stand out during what has been a very difficult year. 

New client wins

This year we have been lucky enough to welcome and onboard more clients in a 12-month period than ever before. 2020 saw us making several fundamental developments, the most influential being our ‘out of the box’ solution for the logistics market and changing our commercial terms so eradicate up front installation fees. The COVID-19 pandemic was a driver for change and as a result, we are delighted to welcome a host of new names to the Podfather customer list, including:

Customers 2020

Some of the companies who have signed up as Podfather customers this year.

So much of our news business continues to come through word-of-mouth referrals and we are incredibly grateful that our customers are so willing to recommend us to others within the industry. If you know of anyone that we could be helping please get in touch.

Latest software developments

2020 saw us roll out several new technical developments, including a new version of our route management module with a focus on improving the user experience. Map displays were enhanced and route visualisation improved to make the day-to-day task of managing jobs and allocating orders much quicker and easier. These enhancements have complemented our existing route planning functionality which enables transport operators to automatically create cost-effective and time-efficient routes that meet customer time windows and access constraints at the touch of a button. 

“Route optimisation technology has been around for many years but what makes our solution different is that it does so much more than just route planning,” comments Colin McCreadie, Managing Director at Podfather. “As our name suggests we’ve been offering an electronic proof of delivery or ePOD, solution for some time but, as our customers know, we deliver a complete package that gives users everything from order management, route planning and vehicle checks, through to driver tracking, customer notifications, invoicing and reporting tools.”

In addition to the route management changes the Podfather development team has been working on, and rolling out, several enhancements to our other functionalities, namely our vehicle check system, driver tracking features, ePOD, customer notification and reporting options.  With lots more in store for 2021 now is an interesting and exciting team for all Podfather customers.  

Doors open on a new market

As a business our experience stretches back over 20 years but this year, more than any other on record, has seen our home delivery offering being rolled out by more customers than ever before. The functionality has always been available but 2020 has seen demand soar. The reason, which will come as no surprise, is the impact of COVID-19.

This year we have seen existing customers swap to a home delivery model and new customers, such as Reach Food Service, Wright Brothers, James Knight of Mayfair and ODDBOX, select PODFather as the system of choice for planning and managing their home delivery operations. With Podfather these companies, among others, are now able to automate multi drop planning, customer notifications, delivery tracking and electronic proof of delivery because of introducing our cloud-based back office system and easy to use driver smartphone app.  

“So many of us have relied on home delivery to keep our shelves stocked during the COVID-19 pandemic and I am immensely proud of what we, here at Podfather have been able to do to help so many companies hit the ground running with their home delivery offerings,” adds McCreadie.

ISO Certification Renewal

This year saw the Podfather team celebrating the renewal of its ISO 27001 accreditation: the internationally recognized standard in information security.  When it comes to keeping information assets secure, companies can rely on software supplies who have achieved this ISO 27001 status. ISO 27001 accredited companies are renowned for providing a best-in-class Information Security Management System (ISMS) for the maintenance and control of information entrusted by third parties, in this case Podfather’s growing list of customers. Having first received the accolade in September 2019 the Podfather team is celebrating the retention of its ISO status having successfully completed this year’s stringent, independent, audit.

“We are hugely proud of our ISO 27001 status and I am delighted that we have retained this accreditation again this year,” comments McCreadie. “We have always taken data security incredibly seriously here at Podfather and being awarded an ISO 27001 certification shows everyone that we are working with that our commitment to data security and integrity has been internationally recognised by the ISO governing body.”

Teamwork makes the dreamwork

Finally, none of these achievements would have been possible without the hard work and dedication of everyone here at Podfather. Even with the introduction of lockdown and the shift to home working the Podfather team has pulled together both for our customers and each other.  2020 saw us work as a collection to Race Across the World with team members committing to covering over 12,000 kilometers by any means necessary. We have had runners, cyclist, walkers, and canoeist embracing the challenge both on their own and with their families, and we have shared in each other’s achievements. We have come together for online social events and 2020 even saw the launch of a virtual Podfather world where employees can interact online in a replica office setting. We came together just last week to cook together for Christmas, and it has been great to see everyone embracing the change in circumstances with such a positive attitude.  

“In addition to looking after our clients during these difficult times looking after our staff has been of paramount importance,” McCreadie. “Podfather is more than just a software system; Podfather is also a great team of likeminded and hardworking people who have pulled together to make this year memorable in so many ways.”

Wishing you and your families a very happy Christmas

This is not the end of the Podfather year. Our offices will be open throughout the Christmas period, and normal customer support hours still apply. 

“I’d like to take this opportunity, on behalf of everyone here at Podfather, to thank our valued customers, both new and old, for their continued support,” concludes McCreadie, Managing Director at Podfather. “We send our best wishes to you and your families and we look forward to seeing what 2021 has in store for us all.”