How UPS delivers faster using $8 headphones and code that decides when
dirty trucks get cleaned

        Avoiding those mistakes, and doing so efficiently, is key to
        the company's survival. The boom in e-commerce means UPS now
        delivers as many as 31 million packages a day. Keeping track
        of all that is an immensely difficult problem. It's made worse
        because fulfilling online orders often requires driving to
        far-flung residences. That is more expensive for UPS than
        delivering to businesses, where drivers typically can leave
        and pick up multiple packages at each stop.  And the recent
        news that Amazon is preparing to launch a low-cost package
        delivery service means UPS is about to face intense
        competition from a company with top customer-tracking
        capabilities and even artificial-intelligence expertise.  UPS
        sees advanced analytics as critical to addressing this
        challenge. In 2016, it began collecting data across its
        facilities. Today there are about 25 projects based on that
        data, grouped under the acronym EDGE (which stands for
        "enhanced dynamic global execution"). The program has sparked
        changes in everything from how workers place packages inside
        delivery trucks in the morning to how the vast army of
        temporary hires that UPS recruits during the busy holiday
        season are trained. Eventually, data will even dictate when
        UPS vehicles get washed.

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