No doubt PostNL also delivers parcels to your home from time to time. After all, the company delivers an enormous number of parcels in the Benelux every day. To get them to the right address as quickly as possible, PostNL in Belgium uses Belmap API, a service that provides high-quality address data.
The challenge: the right address
“To deliver a parcel, it is important to know the exact address," says Peter Hulstaert, Business Analyst at PostNL Belgium.
“If you make an online purchase, you as a consumer share various details, including your address. During the preparation of the shipment, the webshop passes on these data to PostNL. The logistics service provider must then make sure that the supplied addresses actually exist and are correct. People sometimes make typing errors, abbreviate street names, omit certain words or use outdated street names.”
“To check the correctness of addresses, we need an automated solution," says Peter.
The solution: Belmap API in the cloud
PostNL resorted to Belmap API and called in GIM to implement that application. Thanks to Belmap API, the parcel company has quick and easy access to accurate and up-to-date address data in Belgium. The addresses that PostNL receives via web shops are then automatically checked and standardised. In addition, the addresses are coded so that they can be used for planning GPS routes.
“The implementation of Belmap API was extremely smooth," says Peter enthusiastically. “GIM's follow-up was excellent and ensured that the integration went well. They provide the Belmap API service especially for us in a separate data centre that PostNL picked. And thanks to the frequent and, above all, personal contact, everything went according to plan.”
The result: fast delivery guaranteed
An additional advantage of the Belmap API is scalability. Peter: “Belmap API runs in the cloud. At peak times - think of the period around St Nicholas, Christmas and New Year - we see the number of parcels to be delivered increase exponentially. Then we ask GIM to temporarily add a number of servers in the data centre, until the rush dies down. That is invaluable, because as a parcel delivery company, we can be very flexible for our customers and partners. And this without compromising on quality, because thanks to Belmap API, PostNL can guarantee to deliver quickly and efficiently to all Belgians.”
“With this project, we are undoubtedly laying the foundation for a long-term collaboration with GIM," concludes Peter. “For example, an internal project is already underway in which we work on the geographical representation of the exact location and vicinity of streets. In short: Watch this space!”