These continuously emerging trends, if implemented strategically within operations that adhere to best practices in the supply chain management, will deliver effective and positive results in 2018.
In 2017, logistics industry has gone through various changes, from Amazon’s moves to the continuous growth of IoT, Internet Of Things, Logistics has started to digitalise its processes.
Some Logistics companies believe that the digitalization of Logistics is a result of continuous push from the customer’s side. Because when it comes to online purchases and delivery, customers want better, seamless experience.
As a matter of fact, change always has 2 sides: opportunity and risk. However, technologies, like transportation management software are providing new opportunities rather than risks. Adapting new technologies and getting more digital is indeed a long process, but with a good plan and strategy, cooperation with technology providers, and investment in new products and services, it is pretty easy to cope up with technology.
Even today, being digital is a big challenge for many businesses in Logistics industry. Around 27% of the business owners have updated themselves digitally. This number is significantly higher in other industries.
Let’s have a look at what 2018 is going to bring for Logistics Industry
1. Your Most Valuable Asset- Data
Today, logistics companies have more data than ever before, they just have to make good use of it. Using supply chain data in a better way can help organizations to get involved in the predictive analysis. This may help them to understand their customer's shopping pattern and behavior, know the market in a better way, and cut out the delivery times.
2. E-brokerage Platforms
In the upcoming year, it has been assumed that the industry will move away from manual processes such as paperwork to automated work, and get more efficient. For this, one possible solution can be a well-connected e-brokerage platform that provides automated processes such as offering rates, real-time bookings, showing schedules and routes, trace and track availability.
By aligning operations with the freight brokerage solutions, companies can promote transparency, trust, and reliability among stakeholders. In addition to that, it can make operations faster as well as more efficient.
3. Sensorization Of Goods
Whether it is a road, rail, ocean, or air shipping, proper use of sensors for tracking and tracing the routes of good is a better way and a simple scenario where companies can use the IoT, Internet of Things, in the logistics market. Sensors have a comparatively longer lifecycle and also they are able to send information through gateways. As the information provided by those IoT sensors get visualized on a map, it is easy to constantly follow the status of the shipment. In addition to that, owners can also access all the relevant information regarding shipments.
4. Retailers Solved Last Mile Issues
Many e-commerce sites such as Amazon, have changed the way people buy stuff. If you are buying anything online, you check out the price matching, reviews, fast returns, and lots of shipping options. Among all these aspects, shipping options have the strongest impact on the supply chain.
If retailers are not able to offer overnight or even two-days shipping, customers will go elsewhere. This short-shipping time puts huge pressure on retailers, they are forced to solve the last mile issue. Getting the desired item to the buyer’s door in minimal time is one of the most difficult and challenging parts of this process
For addressing this problem, retailers are embracing the omnichannel shipping options like they use a ship to store. This allows retailers to have their existing and fast options for shipping their product while customers get the fast and free delivery they always demand.
Undoubtedly, this is a worth considering deal for the retail shippers. The omnichannel shipping means some predictable demand from the retailers without any need to design the last mile delivery option.
But for the last mile shippers, it’s not a great thing. Even those retailers who don’t go for ship-to-store model may opt Amazon Locker-style system, which also minimized the final, front door drop time.
In 2018, retailers may proactively work and consider portfolio in order to understand their customer's behavior and needs. As their operation is driven by the customer demand instead of being self-guided.
5. Transparency Will Be A Talking Point
As brands are expected to make shipping charges as per the customer’s demands, customers also look for the transparency in the supply chain in place of just worrying about the value.
In this technological era, a definition of transparency has expanded. It is no longer related to the mode of shipping only, whether it is by air or natural gas-powered train. Now, customers are getting increasingly aware of the worker right issues, salary, political affiliations, and environmental factors.
While a majority of buyers are passive processors, they care about supply chain information, but they don’t go deep into stats and data. Still, they can take action if find anything suspicious.
In the upcoming year, buyers need to be proactive. They must familiar with the customer service and technology issues about which their clients care and they have to figure out whether their operations align with those demands, or not.
While companies don’t have to bend to each and every preference of the masses, there would be some demands and social movements that they are not supposed to overlook. For example, fuel inefficiency. It’s not a great aspect either for business or for the environment, but it won’t make any severe damage to the brand too.
These continuously emerging trends, if implemented strategically within operations that adhere to best practices in the supply chain management, will deliver effective and positive results in 2018. Businesses will surely get benefits from this logistic management software by ensuring that the supply chain entities work together in a smarter way. It is also true that supply management trends and its best practices can’t work without support. They need strong procurement practices that are integrated into other processes of a supply chain.
Stories by Ritesh Patil