From the first assembly lines to today’s advanced robotic solutions, the supply chain process is constantly evolving. The latest digital transformation trends in supply chain and logistics focus on smart, tech-driven management to reduce operating expenses and increase efficiency.
The logistics and supply chain aspect are vital for any business in terms of supply of quality raw materials, efficient manufacturing process, as well as tracking, transport and storage of the finished goods. Companies implementing well-designed supply chain practices are able to meet consumer needs in a more expeditious and timely manner.
To continue this topic from our previous blog post, Top 6 Trends Transforming Logistics and Supply Chain in 2020, we decided to gather together, what we think are the top supply chain tech trends.
1. Machine Learning
Huge amounts of data are more common than ever before in today’s supply chains, thanks to the computing enhancements and technologies on the digital edge. As a common technology, machine learning is useful to a wide range of logistics technologies. At the moment, it is being applied to grow warehouse management systems (WMS), robotic vision systems, supply chain planning, supply chain visibility and more.
According to Forbes, machine learning is also becoming increasingly important in transportation execution systems as it can generate better and more informed estimated time of arrival (EST) for shipments. To gather the needed data, machine learning is working with real-time visibility solutions to gather information on constraints, such as capacity, regulations and hours of service, and then giving accurate data on how to manage better ETA for shipments to warehouses, stores and to the end customer.
2. Artificial Intelligence
As mentioned in our previous blog post, in 2020 the latest innovations in AI and data sciences will benefit carriers, suppliers, shippers, and consumers. Augmented intelligence – a combination of AI automation and human intelligence is also expected to benefit the logistics and supply chain industry, by allowing the professionals to improve efficiency while saving costs and reducing mistakes.
3. Advanced Analytics
The significance of advanced analytics in the supply chain is considerable. Advance analytics are being increasingly deployed in real-time or near-real-time in areas such as dynamic pricing, product quality testing and dynamic replenishment. This means that the availability of the supply chain data, such as IoT data, dynamic sales data and weather patterns, gives the ability to deduce the current environment better in order to better understand future scenarios and make profitable recommendations.
4. IoT – Internet of Things
Internet of Things is not a new concept to use in the supply chain as it has been used for over two decades with real-time WMS, Warehouse Management System, and with fleet management solutions. However, it is growing rapidly in select supply chain domains and is already in use in sensors that track the assets or container.
According to Gartner, IoT could have an extensive and deep impact on the supply chain in areas like utilization and higher uptime, improved customer service, improved end-to-end supply chain performance, or improved supply availability, supply chain visibility and reliability.
5. Autonomous Things
Autonomous things are often physical devices, such as drones, robots and autonomous vehicles, that allows implementing new business scenarios and optimize existing ones. In the logistic field, this could mean driverless trucks, robots carrying out various tasks in the manufacturing facilities or using drones to reduce the time for inventory checks by taking images with the drone camera.
6. Digital Supply Twin Chain
The digital twinning technology is a boon to the logistics and supply chain industry. It melds the digital and physical worlds into one and allows us to engage with the digital model of a physical object. With its vast capabilities to track, monitor and diagnose assets, this technology trend has the potential to revolutionize the logistics sector. It can support logistics infrastructure by optimizing design and performance, create a dynamic delivery network with access to real-time situations, and enhance shipment protection by identifying potential weaknesses from production to delivery. It can also predict the performance of packaging materials by conceptualizing the product packaging in a digital space and testing it for defects before deploying.
7. Immersive Experience – VR & AR
The integration of virtual reality (VR) and augmented reality (AR) will extend immersive applications to go beyond isolated and single-person experiences. With this supply chain leaders can use these platforms to save time, improve safety and make mundane tasks easier, such as using AR to provide renderings of equipment to visualize the footprint in a defined space to compare different configuration options or using voice-controlled personal assistants to remotely check product features or appointments.
According to Gartner, the current capabilities offered by blockchain solutions for supply chains include a loose portfolio of technologies and processes. These span the middleware, database, verification, security, analytics, and contractual and identity management concepts.
Blockchain is, however, aligned to potentially help companies to fulfil critical and longstanding challenges presented across dynamic and complex supply chains.
As the digital transformation is pushing forward, we are sure to see exciting new trends emerging in the logistics and supply chain field. Gateway Digital in association with its end-to-end logistics innovation partner- DiLX uses emerging technologies to create new service models and business concepts for logistics and supply chain companies and help them transform to keep pace in the digital world. Are you looking to implement innovative technologies to streamline and manage your logistics business? Know more about us at www.thegatewaydigital.com or drop us a message at email@example.com.