Logistics is an ever-evolving industry with plenty of changes happening every single day. The emerging trends in logistics see the use of technology in its entire processes. The advent of technology has helped the freight and logistics industry a lot! It has brought many advantages such as cost reduction and enhanced efficiency. Many freight forwarders and logistics firms work on digitally-enabled platforms as it provides flexibility. Recently, as all know, the Covid-19 pandemic has caused severe disruptions in the global supply chain scenario. As a result, freight forwarding functions are thoroughly disrupted during the lockdown and unlocking phases. Many challenges crippled the sector and influenced the smooth movement of the shipment.
Moving Towards a Brighter Future
Manufacturing has slowed down considerably for a while, affecting demand and supply directly. Again, coupled with the restrictions in movement created a big dilemma in freight forwarding and logistics firms. The pandemic has been playing peekaboo for almost a year owing to mutations happening now and again. But supply chain disruptions have to be tackled under any circumstance. Hence, logistics and freight forwarding firms have great responsibility resting on their shoulders. From changing consumer behaviour to unexpected pandemic situations impacting the freight and logistics sector, many transformations are likely to occur. Here we shall go through a few of the expected trends in logistics to reduce lead time and unnecessary expenses. Let’s break it down!
Emerging Trends in Logistics
The pandemic-induced online shopping has made the supply-chain logistics sector function with more competency than earlier. For instance, from automating warehouse to digital training support, explore these emerging trends in the supply chain logistics industry.
1. Use of Artificial Intelligence (AI) and Robotics:
As we have discussed just above, technology plays a distinct role in shaping the future of every industry. The freight and logistics sector is no exception. Both Artificial Intelligence (AI) and Robotics facilitates automating the supply chain, eliminates the dependency on human resources in all core areas. Deep learning and AI solutions help transform the evolving freight and logistics sector by reducing the delay and error in the decision-making process or building suitable allied platforms. One of the emerging trends in logistics, using AI and advanced technologies to ease the tasks, helps in cost reduction and improving overall efficiency.
2. Warehouse Automation:
Warehouses are getting automated at a fast pace with pick-and-place (P&Ps) machines such as automated guided vehicles (AGV), robotic arms and automated storage and retrieval system (AS/RS). Warehouses reduce costs by enhancing productivity every day with the help of P&Ps. Logistics companies supporting warehouse automation are successful at reducing operating costs to a great extent. Apart from that, automated vehicles are more useful for on-demand business that functions on speed and convenience while offering their solutions. It further minimises the total delivery costs. The use of these vehicles has become increasingly popular in this type of business.
3. Use of Augmented Reality (AR):
Isn’t it great if you have AR helping you in packing your items from a warehouse? Having a 3D illustration on how to pack and delivering the goods would be a great idea. It not only saves times but helps in improving efficiency as well. Moreover, using AR in logistics helps eliminate the old navigation system by replacing it with the 3D view of routes. Further, helping delivery drivers to choose a path that is devoid of traffic helps them deliver shipment quite fast, without delay. Indeed, it offers a stress-free experience for both delivery person and customers while optimising the movement of loads.
4. Blockchain Technology
Information transfer is vital for streamlining logistics operations. Hence, the security of information also becomes crucial. Many challenges pop up during data processing amount to security threats. To prevent any such issues and to protect the interests of customers, blockchain technology becomes increasingly popular among logistics companies. The use of bitcoin blockchain helps logistics firms go paperless through data-driven system and applications. While adopting blockchain technology, we can ensure the security of information flawlessly.
5. Internet of Things (IoT):
Warehouse automation becomes popular during the coming years. The need for precise and optimised data management becomes vital for all firms operating in the logistics sector. It leads them to the world of the Internet of Things (IoT). Logistics companies require more sophisticated solutions and embedded software applications to deliver quality services to their customers. IoT help connects multiple devices used by logistics firms for data transfer and its monitoring. The interconnected system ensures proper management of the warehouse and by helping in accessing the status of inventory. Also, it provides information on the use of resources used in the warehouse, for example, a piece of equipment.
With the logistics industry subjected to several external uncontrollable factors, there is always a need to embrace technology to prevent any atrocious effects on its smooth running. While a few of them gets mitigated with the help of technology, logistics firms have acknowledged its significance. The emerging trends in logistics points that the need for automation in transportation has become inevitable. Ans also points that technology and transportation are very much interlinked and cannot be separated.
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