The fundamental goal of technological advancement is to make any task less costly and more efficient. It is mainly for the logistics sector, where labor is scarce, capacity is short, and customer demands are stricter. There has been a massive advancement in the logistics sector, and things will progress as innovation continues to evolve. Here are six technology trends for 2018 and beyond:
1. Robotics and Automation
Though there are still advances to be made, logistics companies are looking into the benefits of automation and robotics as they offer efficiency, accuracy and long-term cost savings. As of now, the most commercially viable solution for many companies is- Cobots. This is where machine fundamentally works with the help of a human. The device comprehends the optimization and can provide maximum support, while the human act as a manipulator. Maybe in future, organizations would prefer a fully autonomous robot with humans working just as coordinators.
2. Safety and Cybersecurity
There are numerous organizations which have been affected by cyber security threats, and logistics providers are more concerned about protecting this industry. Amplified demand for a faster turnaround may result in the risk of accidents in transportation operations. Hence, this will require the use of more innovative analytics to monitor employee’s performance and how well does he obey the safety standards.
3. Mobile Applications
The advent of innovations and Internet of Things (IoT) will promote logistics service providers and shippers to adopt mobile applications. There are numerous applications which exist exclusively for barcode scanning, fleet, management, shipment tracking, order management, and inventory management. Logistics firm can use the information and capabilities through an application to manage and track and also satisfy demand.
4. Transportation Management System (TMS)
A TMS is considered a hub for all logistics activities, communications, and processes which also includes route scheduling and optimization, carrier management, payment processing, etc. TMS applications have a made a place in the cloud-based platforms thereby reducing postponements, removing bottlenecks from downtime and refining cybersecurity as well. As a result, many more companies will adopt this system and keep up with the growing demand.
5. Artificial Intelligence
The potential to utilize Artificial Intelligence (AI) to improve decision making, transform businesses and enhance customer experience will aid digital enterprises in the long run. Many organizations are planning to adopt AI in their system, while the rest have already made advancements by implementing AI solutions in their businesses.
6. Blockchain Technology
The blockchain is a distributed ledger technology and has transformed sectors like government, healthcare, supply chain, logistics and more with its implications. Organizations like BiTA (Blockchain in Transport Technology) are creating universal standards for blockchain’s mass adoption in the logistics sector.