David Rogers, a chairman, director, and a consultant at Asia Pacific Logistics Federation, conducted a study on logistics tech trends that are predicted to shape the future. As a matter of fact, if you see our world today, it certainly is true that time has become a hero of logistics world. Every market player invests extensively in innovations to help them beat the clock. For example, Uber has leverage its wings from human transportation to UberEATS, Uber food delivery arm, and it becomes a fast models of last-mile logistics for smart food delivery.
David said, “Most disruptive technologies that have transformed the logistics ecosystem have focused on shortening geographic distances using time.” Hence, all current trends in the logistics technology are meant to solve the toughest challenges we face today, including:
- taking critical data-driven decision in real time,
- assessing non-traditional modes of delivery,
- effortless order picking and inventory management,
- simplifying communication with first-contact resolution,
- enhancing warehouse space, productivity, and time-related efficiency,
- reducing risk of errors fraud with a single version of truth, and
- achieving complete real-time transparency across the logistics network and for customers.
David in his tech revolution study revealed several trending technologies that will help logistics win race against time. These trending technologies are:
CHATBOTS – for an effective communication with the promise of first-time resolution
Visibility and transparency is a core of logistics area. However, network ability to communicate effectively and easily with customer is as equally important as visibility and transparency. And today’s world is more comfortable with chat interface with only asking and accepting direct answer to access urgent information. Therefore, employing chatbots can be a fast and efficient choice to connect every logistics-related interaction with customers.
BLOCKCHAIN – for ensuring transparency in transactions
Blockchain is a critical element of logistics used to ensure transparency and reliability in every supply chain transaction. Blockchain can deliver a single version of truth, thereby protecting supply chain assets and resources from errors and fraudulent activity.
SENSOR-ENABLED – for a real-time visibility in transportation management
Radar-based solutions are likely to open new venues of innovation in future as it is not only location and estimated time arrival that matters, but also other parameters such as fuel efficiency and environmental-friendly. Therefore, the use of sensors and radars for real-time tracking and tracing is somehow vital for the business.
IMPREGNABLE DATA SECURITY – for a safe and secure delivery
Data security is no exception for logistics landscape. If your data is leaked or is used illegally, the result could be loss to customers and the business will be devastated. Hence, logistics ecosystem such as General Data Protection Regulation intends to ensure strict compliance with data security specifications. The rest is to ensure complete compliance with data-based regulations.
HOLOLENS – for visualisation-driven mixed reality solutions
HoloLens is a completely unique dimension developed by Microsoft for interactive learning or activities. With HoloLens, a skilled expert can provide an immediate support even from remote locations. This is very useful when – let’s say – one of your delivery truck has crushed or has accident on its trip. This life-like interaction with experts is enhanced through tools that help expert to mark specific parts, annotate the three-dimensional image, and attach support diagrams with ease. HoloLens also enables managers to monitor and train employees from remote location with ease.
POWERFUL BUSINESS INTELLIGENCE & ANALYTICS – for taking decision based on strong data-driven insights
Unharnessed and wild data are floating freely over the network and it can be bad for your business as it can be a thread of serious data overload. Therefore, streamlining and dividing your data into pockets of relevance through business analytics and intelligence can help stakeholders take good decisions. Moreover, to optimise utilisation and to achieve operational excellence, you need to use logistics technology of business intelligence.
WAREHOUSE 2.0 – for an automated operation
Automation, intelligence machine, and robotic are not new old revolution in logistics. David mentioned that robots are robust and extremely fast. They support human’s work and with robots taking over the routine and repetitive activities that involve increased physical efforts, it sure will improve your warehouse management. Human, on the other side, will manage tasks that require higher intellect such as taking smart decision involving selection of items that need to be picked, the location, packaging, and loading. Not to mention, this synergistic operation of simplifying warehouse operation will sure shape the trend of the future, added David.
Logistics ecosystem is indeed hopeful for tech fest ahead. Adapting technology-enabled solutions in your logistics company can help you focus on deriving qualitative benefits such as customer satisfaction, cost savings, efficiency, and collaborative functioning. However, it is clear that time will win everything over as almost every innovation needs time to take each node of logistics network to higher level.
And after knowing what technology will be in the future of logistics and how it shaped the future, you should ask yourself on ‘what’s your plan for the future?’ Staying at where you are right now might be risky for your entire business.
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