In the logistics industry, there are a lot of constantly moving parts that need to be accounted for; as the middleman between the supply chain and the store or customer, you must balance storing products, shipping them, distributing them, and interacting with the supplier. As complex and intricate as all of this sounds, now imagine trying to stay on top of all of these different tasks without the aid of any technology to help you.
Scary, right? This is what the logistics industry looked like before the advent of the internet and modern day technologies. Everything existed on paper, so checking inventory or looking up a previous order was time-consuming at best. However, with more and more technology being developed every day, processes are becoming streamlined, information is more easily accessible, and companies are better able to monitor their inventory. Take a look at just a few of the ways that technology has helped revamp the logistics industry.
- The Internet of Things (IoT Technology)
- Outside of social networking sites and search engines, there’s a whole other side to the internet that helps logistics companies better manage their inventory and business as a whole. One major problem logistics companies have experienced is tracking freight: once the shipment left for distribution, there was really no way to track it until it made it to the destinations. These companies have recently adapted existing sensor technologies to help solve the problem and provide them with more visibility throughout the whole process. These sensors can track location, make it easier for companies to monitor the movement of their shipments and can gather and send information about its location via cloud technologies. They can even keep track of temperature of the shipment to help better regulate for heat- or cold-sensitive items.
- Drones can deliver.
- Drone technology has really taken off over the past few years. From providing bird’s eye views to taking amazing photographs, drones have gone from military usage to personal usage, and now they’re embarking on the next phase of their development: delivery. Amazon made waves in February 2017 when they announced their plans to implement unmanned drones as part of their Prime Air delivery service. This means that, along with the drivers and trucks they use to deliver products, they can also deliver packages much more quickly and directly to your home or business.
- Wear your technology.
- Wearable technology has been around for decades, but lately new advances that allow the tech to become smaller, more lightweight, and more user friendly have become pervasive in personal technology. These wearable tech devices are helping increase efficiency and reduce human error throughout the process. A German logistics company called DHL conducted a test at one of its warehouses to see if wearable tech could actually help to eliminate error; they found that smart glasses in particular helped to not only increase efficiency by 25% but also boosted the satisfaction level of employees.