The way logistics procedures are carried out has changed as a result of supply chain technology development. Digitized processes give businesses more accuracy, transparency, and rewarding outcomes. Some of the solutions for safety and improved travel execution include the development of drones and automated vehicles.
Processes are becoming more automated as a result of increased resource availability. This option shortens the time for demands, lowers the likelihood of mistakes, and boosts logistics productivity.
Here, we demonstrate how technology in the supply chain has impacted the industry while emphasizing some of the key developments that have already produced positive operational outcomes.
Technology in the supply chain
It has never been easy to integrate logistical procedures while maintaining the effectiveness of each phase. The best method to achieve information integration and increased agility in the supply chain is through the use of technology. Process automation, management tools, data analysis tools, and a number of other crucial and unique solutions make this achievable.
This entire logistical path is made more efficient by each of these options. Each product has a different need, from the point of origin to the final consumer. This journey's use of technology gives it more control over how it develops. Along with being dynamic, managers are also able to stay more engaged and aware of expectations.
Robotics and automation in the last mile
In the supply chain, the last mile is a constant source of major concern. A number of issues, including delays, theft, and data inaccuracies, may arise as soon as a product leaves its intended location.
It is vital to automate in order to decrease these incidences. The digitization and automation of logistical processes and goods transport vehicles might cut logistics and transport expenses by 47% by 2030, according to a PWC analysis from October 2018.
Automated deliveries are robotics' initial step into the logistics industry. The primary solution is provided by autonomous ground vehicles, which have been created, tried out, and employed by numerous startups all over the world. This development led to an intriguing analysis: in the near future, driverless trucks would likely be used for 80% of deliveries, predicts American consultant McKinsey & Company.
As is the case with the American company Marble, several businesses have already made substantial investments in the development of robotics in the last mile. A camera equipped with high-resolution LiDAR (Light Detection And Ranging) technology and based on a 3D model controls your copy machine-sized vehicle as it moves down the sidewalks.
Another notable business is the London-based Starship. Vehicles are already utilized in food delivery applications using robots that resemble beverage coolers. They can complete deliveries in 30 minutes and have 6 wheels.
The propagation of Big Data in logistics
Big data is one of the primary ways that technology is used in the supply chain. The phrase describes a substantial amount of continuously produced data, whether structured or not. With careful examination, it is conceivable to draw strategic conclusions from them. By using it, it is possible to handle massive amounts of data and turn it into accurate numbers that can lead to advancements.
Managers may better comprehend the company's outcomes and all the metrics that their actions produce with the use of this data. From this data, it is able to identify trends, suggest areas for improvement, and identify the logistics department's biggest flaws.
These realizations make decision-making clearer. As a result, the supply chain grows more effectively.
The field of the Internet of Things (IoT)
The sector of technology known as the Internet of Things, or IoT, is where any product, device, tool, or other mechanism connects to the internet to share information. This term changes when used in the context of logistics and becomes the Industry Internet of Things (IIOT), which focuses on the industry.
The application can happen in a number of places, like smart containers. Full tracking is possible thanks to technology. Therefore, precise location is provided through geographic position control. The same is carried out with trucks and other types of goods.
Using smart labels with RFID technology inside the products themselves is another effective application. It is possible to figure out where they are in the stock, the date of entry, and any other vital information with just one reading. The suggestion in this situation is to establish a comprehensive database that enables exact logistical management.
Resources, such as wearable technologies, have made progress throughout the supply chain. They encourage the execution of multiple tasks in less time, ensuring vital dynamism in the logistical processes. Smart watches and smart eyewear are a few of the features.
They are actually tools that workers utilize. This speeds up processes and cuts down on communication time. It can be used both within businesses, when an employee is completing a task, like using exoskeletons to minimize physical labor, as well as outside, when a delivery is being made.
In the event of a mechanical issue, quick communication is crucial. Rapid information exchange enables the development of an equally flexible solution.
Augmented reality technologies
The supply chain is already beginning to implement augmented reality technologies. Digital layers are introduced into the physical perspective, assisting in completing various tasks more quickly and effectively.
For example, augmented reality can be utilized to project warehouse layouts for better and more effective product layout design.
An amazing example of effectiveness in this area is picking by vision. Smart glasses can read bar codes on shelves, capturing a significant amount of data. The employee receives a variety of details about various products and their relevant positioning automatically.
Cloud storage and computing
Cloud technology already plays a significant role in daily life and is found in many resources. Fog computing is the main game. In contrast to the cloud, it proposes to decentralize data, enabling data to be transported more quickly to an intermediary layer before the cloud itself.
This makes information entry quicker, wherever it takes place. As a result, updating the logistic data is simple. Transmission in the supply chain happens more quickly and with fewer errors.
Distributed Data Technology and the Blockchain
Blockchain is a decentralized database that stores information in a secure manner that cannot be altered. Although there is still a long way to go until blockchain technology is really used in logistics, we have already been able to identify many potential uses.
For instance, all parties involved in a commodities delivery procedure have safe access to the same data. Orders are released more quickly as a result, as are invoices and delivery instructions. The likelihood of errors and fraud diminishes when information is delivered with reliability and transparency.
As we can see, organizations that want to lower costs, boost staff productivity, and create dynamic, agile processes should consider incorporating technology into their supply chain operations.
Now that you are more knowledgeable about the technological possibilities in logistics, find out a little bit about the work Dygital9 has been conducting and the potential of our technology.