Enhancing organizational value by digitizing logistics
When online commerce exploded, it created exponential growth opportunities for retail sellers and forced them to expand their operations on par with organizations that move essential goods and products. The ensuing market growth paved the way for eCommerce's current logistics and supply chain infrastructure. Digital enablement across various processes and the creation of new processes to handle the increasing number of orders have created a fast and round-the-clock buying and selling trend.
As the trend of moving goods, products, and resources across the globe continues to rise, the logistics businesses will continuously need to upgrade themselves and be prepared for the sudden changes in demand and supply that decide the volume and pace required. Digitalization, especially, Industry 4.0 applications, are accelerating the paradigm shift and are assisting organizations to gain more visibility of their supply chain.
Valuations forecast by Business Wire show that the global logistics market value could reach USD 6.5 Trillion by 2027 with a Compound Annual Growth Rate (CAGR) of 4.7% from 2022 to 2027. It showcases the huge market potential that lay ahead for players in logistics who despite the ebbs and flows of a pandemic have managed to come back and operate. However, optimizing loads, and improving process efficiencies are just as important as it is to speed up transportation if the companies want to sustain the market dynamics.
Emerging digital trends in logistics
A digitalization approach is a key to enhancing the value of logistics organizations. There are various technology trends that these organizations can experiment with and adapt to tide over the current limitations in logistics and embrace their full potential.
Internet of Things (IoT): The availability of continuous connectivity used along with sensors to track time, location, temperature, and various other parameters relevant for the cargo has made IoT ideal for the smart transformation of industrial processes. The most significant part of this embedment is that all of this can be tracked from a device as simple as a personal smartphone using custom-built applications.
Electronic Air Waybill (e-AWB): There is an ongoing trend of limiting the usage of paper and become green in all industries and a similar initiative has led to the implementation of an electronic version of the airway bill that is attached with cargo from start to the end of the delivery. Moreover, an electronic waybill is secure, tamper-proof, and efficient for tracking due to its transparency leading to an overall reduction in cost and timelines.
Autonomous vehicles: It might sound like the plot line of a sci-fi movie, but autonomous vehicles have been in development for over a decade now and may soon be the norm on the roads as we know. Long-time investors such as Tesla and Apple have been working and plan to unveil them in the next few years redefining the logistics fleet that is entirely autonomous saving close to about 30% time. By integrating such a fleet with your logistics platform, companies can look forward to boosting efficiencies in double digits. Using similar vehicles within warehouses to stack, store and move your lots and manage the bins is an existing application that is gaining ground.
Blockchain: Despite limited real-time applications currently in usage, blockchain has a huge scope for decentralizing information while allowing businesses to track back the cargo to its source, a very crucial aspect of logistics. Throughout the supply chain, multiple documents are issued along with bills and forms, all of which must be tied to a single consignment or cargo. Keeping account of so many documents often leads to confusion and is prone to human error. Blockchain works like a digital thread holding them together with its ledger capabilities increasing efficiency and securing the chain.
AI/ML: The long and arduous supply chains generate endless data loads which can be mined to derive insights to build better delivery models and help companies plan their inventory, forecast demand, and optimize their fleets. Machine learning applications can detect patterns of vulnerability in existing chains and prepare the organizations for future-proofing their transportation.
There is no one right way or one correct solution or application for logistics companies to choose. The geography of operations and regulations imposed can either pose limitations or bring out opportunities for them to explore new digital arenas to gain ground over the competitors. It is important for organizations to consider technologies with all limitations and other influencing factors so that it is easy for them to decide which way works the best. Intelligent solutions are becoming integral to operations everywhere and with the right selection, you can emerge over most of the challenges to stay ahead!
Your solutions will be key to simplifying operations and instilling diligence throughout. How do you choose to operate and what works best for you? Carve out your niche by enabling a guided digital transformation.