In an increasingly complex environment, our urge to simplify our lives has risen considerably. It’s practically impossible to imagine our existence without all of the technologically advanced solutions that make our survival easier. Not only in our personal endeavours, but also in our professional ventures. Technological developments have reverberated around the globe, and the logistics industry is no exception. The pandemic’s breakout not only put supply chain resilience and efficiency to the test but also cleared the path for faster technological adoption across the industry. With so many networks and stakeholders in the logistics industry, digitization and technology integration help to make it more modern, linked, and profitable. Automation has become the cornerstone for enhanced efficiency in the logistics sector, owing to risk mitigation, cost optimization, and increased customer satisfaction.
Let’s take a closer look at the role of technology in the logistics industry in enhancing operational efficiency and reducing cost:
Visibility: In the logistics world, visibility refers to being aware of what is happening with your shipment from start to finish. While this may appear to be a straightforward task, getting comprehensive visibility of the consignment using a typical, manual business technique is a time-consuming and inefficient procedure. Due to inadequate visibility, businesses are frequently caught off guard. Now, despite its complexity, visibility is critical to corporate performance, and automation is essential to reaping the full benefits of consignment. New-age technologies in the transportation and distribution division not only aid overall visibility but also identify the productivity of automobiles in travel via GPS installation. When complications emerge in transportation, complete visibility of the consignment helps both the logistics service provider and the company to keep track of their consignments and make alternate arrangements or correct the situation.
Real-time tracking: The ability to keep a check on goods in real-time has undeniably changed the logistics sector. Today, Logistics Service Providers help companies get access to milestone-based tracking by deploying technologies such as AI, ML, IoT, and Data Analytics through dedicated customer portals, allowing them to view the details of the shipment from one hub to another, as well as the exact date of delivery. Milestone-based tracking allows for more control and collaboration across the supply chain.
Contact-less everything: The introduction of technology and broad digitalization has led to the creation of paperless workplaces, particularly in the creation of applications for crucial documents such as lorry receipts (LR) and proof of delivery (POD). Automating these operations has not only enhanced productivity but has also moved the logistics industry one step closer to contactless logistics.
Digital gateway: The widespread use of digital payment systems like debit/credit cards, UPI-based payments, online banking, and so on has been transformative. The advent of virtual fuel cards, particularly in the logistics industry, has been a significant step toward giving much-needed visibility and openness in financial transactions that were previously primarily conducted in cash. The elimination of cash transactions has made the procedure more efficient as the e-toll system calculates the charges based on the vehicle’s designated path.
Reduced costs: The proverbial ‘early bird gets the worm’ also applies to the freight business. When the freight market gets active and you post your request, keep in mind that there are N-number of suppliers doing the same thing (demand is strong), but supply (i.e., the number of vehicles available) is restricted. The more time spent obtaining a quote, compiling prices, comparing prices, and negotiating, consider the fact that another supplier has already made a decision, and truck(s) has been assigned. This indicates that the supply is dwindling. There’s a good likelihood that prices may rise, which will boost your freight costs. Solution? This procedure should be digitized. A single bidding platform, real-time ranking of transporter prices, reverse auction, and, most importantly, transparency. No more searching for emails from several carriers, no more wasting time arguing – conclude the transaction quickly, get the best price, and save money on freight.
The bottom line
When outdated manual procedures are replaced with new, more technologically advanced systems, productivity gains are significant. Costs are reduced and a company’s ability to perform more efficiently increases when it has efficient logistical operations in place. This gives the company a competitive advantage by providing higher levels of customer satisfaction. If any problems arise, they may be handled swiftly, resulting in better and faster deliveries. Utilizing the logistics software helps improve the supply chain by allowing various parties to communicate easily while the items are in transit. Technology-enabled collaboration is critical in ensuring that every issue is overcome while customer needs are addressed.
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