Making deliveries safer through Jumia’s OTP code
Updated: Jul 14
For any e-commerce business, it is essential to always deliver the right package to the right person. At Jumia, to ensure we deliver packages to the rightful owners, drivers collect the signature and phone number of the recipient. For higher value products, drivers also view the recipient’s ID. The process has proved effective for years, but when COVID-19 pandemic swept the world, Jumia had to pivot.
Improvising with technology
To adapt and introduce a contactless system, we introduced the One-Time-Password (OTP). The OTP code allows our delivery agents to confirm that they are handling an authentic recipient and ensures consumers receive the correct product. When a customer prepays for an order, they receive a unique OTP code. The delivery agent delivering the order receives a similar code, so both parties can identify each other at the time of delivery.
As usual, a consumer is notified when the delivery agent arrives. They provide the agent with the OTP code, and if the codes match, the delivery agent releases the package to the consumer and marks the delivery as successful.
Consumers can receive the OTP code through a push notification through the Jumia App and via SMS. We have also ensured that this feature can work around temporary connectivity issues and other glitches. For instance, a recipient may have an issue with their telecom provider’s network signal or run out of battery shortly after placing an order. If the shopper hasn’t received the OTP code by the time the rider arrives, a code can be regenerated at the point of delivery. The shopper will then get this code and relay it to the delivery agent.
Benefits of the OTP code feature
The OTP code enables a shopper to prove that they are the rightful recipient of the package, to avoid returning products to warehouses due to lack of proper identification.
The OTP code feature makes the entire drop-off process safer for both the delivery agent and the shopper. With the COVID-19 pandemic complicating the handling of cash, or signing the rider's delivery sheet, the OTP code method helps to execute a contactless and cashless delivery, guaranteeing safety for the consumer and delivery agent.
Jumia has for long relied on technological innovations to make eCommerce more convenient. Our OTP code feature is going a step further by making eCommerce safer for everyone at a time when we really need it to be.
************************************** Apoorva Kumar Senior Vice President of Logistics Services at Jumia
Apoorva joined Jumia as VP Operations for Jumia Nigeria, a position he held from 2013 to 2014 when he became COO Logistics. In 2017, he became co-CEO for Jumia Egypt and, since 2019, Apoorva has been Executive VP Logistics in charge of all Supply Chain Operations and Cross Border Business across Jumia Group. He holds an MBA from IIM Calcutta and an Electronics Engineering degree from VTU in India.