5 Impactful Logistics and Supply Chain Trends to Watch in 2018

The advent of digitalisation have penetrated all sectors of industry and disrupted the way people conduct their businesses. The logistics and supply chain industry is no exception. Logistics is playing central role in improving an organisation’s efficiency in streamlining and controlling the flow of goods distribution in every industry. With the coming of automation and artificial intelligence (AI), logistics landscape is undergoing a rapid transformation that forces business leaders to align its logistics and supply chain strategies to prepare for the upcoming digital transformation.

Long gone were the days where you have to keep staring at your watch and call your driver asking about the freight transport’s current location. Thanks to GPS tracking devices, now you can get the latest information about the truck or trailer’s whereabouts real-time. With recent technological advancements, companies can implement seamless and efficient logistics practices to respond to increasing customer’s demands, thus delivering better performance and enhance customer experience.

Here are 5 impactful trends that will define and revolutionise the logistics and supply chain industry this year:

  1. Adoption of AI and blockchain

AI and blockchain are among new technologies predicted to disrupt logistics industry. As blockchain creates a permanent digital public ledger of transactions which can only be shared among particular network of computers within a system, it serves as a very secure way to share information between parties. Besides the security, among the advantages of this technology is to provide transparency as every order and transaction can be tracked.

  1. Call for data-driven logistics

In today’s digital age where people are friends with smartphones and instant contents, customers want every information or product to be accessible and available with just a few clicks away. Data-driven logistics will be the key if you want to create better customer experience. That being said, it is time to rely on big data and predictive analysis.

With the data compiled, you cannot only assess the current state of logistics and supply chain process, but also predicts what kind of trends that will gain traction in the future. Big data will also be a great help when your company is developing new solution. From the data, you can see customer patterns and behaviours towards particular product or service, and thus assume future demands and align your logistics plan accordingly.

  1. Growth in omnichannel supply chain network

Customer’s burgeoning demands to browse and purchase goods through various channels will require real-time visibility of inventory across the supply chain. To response to this trend, there will be considerable growth in omnichannel supply chain network, as business leaders are looking ways to streamline their operations while improving profitability.

  1. Demand for elastic logistics

As there is no such thing like ‘one size fits all’ solution in logistics and supply chain operations, there needs to be elasticity in the practices. In this sense, elastic logistics means the flexibility to expand and shrink capabilities to adjust with the supply chain demands during given timeframe. To deal with changing demands and orders, logistics companies are implementing elastic practices to plan the capacity according to the much-needed requirements such as warehouse management and distribution channels.

  1. Emergence of perfect order deliveries

Many logistics companies believe that perfect order is the right method to measure customer satisfaction, as this trend can assess the success percentage of an operation. It will gauge if the right orders are delivered to the right customers in the right place and the right time. In general, there are four aspects measured in perfect order index, including perfect on time deliveries, perfect orders shipped complete, perfect of orders damage-free shipping, as well as perfect of orders sent with the correct documentation.

Next read: Wading out Stress: How to Delegate Logistics Tasks More Efficiently

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