With the push from the Indian government to augment the state of manufacturing in the country, logistics too has come into the spotlight. In order to keep up with the growing investments in manufacturing that will lead to more freight movement, logistics companies must incorporate any and all tech-led solutions into their offerings to match up. India is geographically vast, and covering that much ground requires a keen understanding of gaps and chokepoints in the freight movement process. There are certain key tech pieces that do and will play a role in bettering logistics offerings.
Of these, here are the 4 most impressive and relevant technologies that are helping logistics companies like FreightFox, Blue Yonder, Ariba, etc constantly evolve and stay on the cutting edge:
The future of logistics is remote-hosted data and process, with half of the logistics firms now embracing cloud-based services and another fifth soon to. Cloud services, which provide adaptability and immediate access to crucial analytics and operations software, are enabling the expansion of highly responsive on-demand business models, which are quickly taking over the logistics industry. While the setup for cloud systems might be a one-time effort, the payoff in terms of cost and turnaround time is manifold. For manufacturers, this means accessibility to their day-to-day freight movement, along with centralized data storage.
In a world where everything relies on data for consistency, accountability, and decision-making, dynamic data modules are a necessity. In the logistics space, data modules that give customers information in real time across various verticals in logistics. The reach of smart data extends to getting real-time rates for vehicles on the road, understanding any external factors that might affect procurement and freight movement, and so on. Such data can also provide management solutions using advanced analytics to address placement failures, track and trace freight movement, optimize procurement, and much more. Reliable data that is geared to understand and change in cohesion with changing aspects of the logistics industry is a differentiator that provides not just insights, but also solutions for problems that crop up on a day-to-day basis. Heightened manufacturing in the country will also require a close watch on demand and supply trends, which can be predicted and projected by data. Companies that provide this solution can bring in their expertise to factor in external pressures and their impact on demand and supply, and adjust strategies accordingly.
Transportation Management Systems (TMS)
TMS are becoming more and more common, particularly among logistics companies. And with good reason—many tech tools need to be managed and organised properly at a single hub. To manage carriers and enhance route automation, TMS is employed. It helps with real-time delivery driver tracking, freight cost reduction, more transparency, and general customer satisfaction scores. Having one platform that routes, stores, and manages all data related to a logistical operation is essential, especially since freight movement has become a quintessential part of the modern world, across industries.
In 2020 and 2021, the pandemic increased the need for automation as companies across industries sought to reduce face-to-face interactions.
Automation in warehouses or distribution centres can range from physical automation to process automation. Typical warehouse automation techniques include digitising manual procedures, employing pick-to-light systems where workers scan barcodes and LED lights indicating the quantity of things to be picked up and their final destination. Depending on the size of their warehouses or distribution centres, as well as the volume and kinds of orders they routinely fill, businesses will continue to automate a number of their procedures to varied degrees. Besides warehouse automation, technology also offers the betterment of procurement automation, which can be extremely useful for manufacturers. Since freight movement relies on procurement to then collate data on the way forward, an automated piece here gives manufacturers the agency to understand and implement procurement strategies that can keep up with the dynamic levels of required freight movement across the country.
Indian logistics is on the cusp of becoming one of the most important segments of the economy. It must keep with the accelerated investments and growth in manufacturing, while also factoring in the vast expanses of the country that need to be covered. More ground to be covered requires better handling of freight, along with smarter, sharper, and faster data and automation. The future of Indian logistics will be ever-evolving, and it will be exciting to see the new cutting edge that technology brings to it.