U.S. companies spend billions of dollars every year on logistics and supply chain technology designed to help supply chain logistics companies operate smarter and more efficiently.
Fortunately, there has been so much progress in supply chain innovation over the past decade that it has become much more affordable to incorporate new technology into your supply chain.
Find out more about current technological trends and the awesome tools you should consider adding to your toolbox.
Supply Chain Innovation: Utilize These Tools
Ready to optimize productivity and drive down operating costs? Futuristic technology is here. And, it’s now a key driver if you want to remain competitive in today’s landscape. Consider the value of incorporating these new pieces of technology into your company.
1. Cloud technology. Cloud computing helps bring everyone together in your supply chain, and suppliers, vendors, customers, and other parties can easily exchange and view critical data in one location. This way, there is clarity around the status of shipments, invoicing, and other key processes.
Moving to the cloud in this current age of digital transformation is necessary to support the modern supply chain. Companies can no longer rely on a fragmented approach to keeping data in multiple spreadsheets and/or legacy, on-premise software applications in today’s fast-paced environment. This leads to communication waste trying to track down key details. There is a better way to connect people, processes, and data in the cloud!
Plus, many on-premise software providers are pushing companies to move to the cloud right now. Don’t get left behind working with software applications that are no longer supported or lack full support as companies sunset these tools. It’s time to roadmap a transition to the cloud.
2. Intersection of physical and digital tools. One common theme we are seeing around technologies for supply chain innovation is the use of mixed reality (MR) or virtual reality (VR). This advanced technology is helping companies identify challenges, solve problems, and accelerate the rate at which products move from one location to the next.
For example, companies have used advanced goggles or glasses to digitally evaluate environments such as the warehouse and then identify corrective actions that can help workers perform duties more efficiently.
According to Deloitte, decision-makers throughout the industry have already adopted this technology or are evaluating adoption. We concur with Deloitte that mixed reality or augmented technology could alter the entire nature of how work is conducted, and that’s how powerful this innovative technology is.
3. Normalized use of robotics. Robots are here to stay. There are so many valuable uses of robots to execute repetitive or menial tasks to free up employees for more valuable activities.
The price of adoption has undoubtedly been a hindrance for many companies that want to implement robotics into their supply chain. It’s certainly difficult to justify the cost of the initial investment. Fortunately, the price tag for industrial robotics is expected to come down in the next few years as the technology continues to mature.
Now is the time to at least dip your toe in the water by evaluating the cost of incorporating robots into your supply chain. Then, when the cost declines and the technology is more refined, you will be prepared to embrace this innovative technology.
4. Predictive analytics. Many technology companies are developing highly-sophisticated software that uses Artificial Intelligence (AI) to turn data into insights that can be used to make informed decisions.
AI-backed predictive analytics technology can help companies anticipate activity in the supply chain, take action before there is a problem (e.g., re-stocking inventory before a shortage), and maintain positive relationships with customers, vendors, and other parties.
The current trend is that this technology is being developed for larger companies that need to manage millions of shipments on a second-by-second basis. We look forward to when this technology is scaled to meet the needs of small to medium-sized companies looking to gain an edge in their decision-making.
5. Autonomous vehicles. One of the more interesting technological developments in the industry is an emphasis on autonomous vehicles to move shipments from one location to another. Imagine 18-wheelers on the road with a truckload full of freight – with no driver behind the wheel. While it sounds concerning at this stage of the game, this will eventually be a reality.
In fact, Fortune estimates that 90% of long-haul trucking may soon be self-driving, thanks to large scale investments from the public sector (e.g., federal government initiatives) and private sector (e.g., businesses developing new technology).
We are encouraged by this development because many of today’s supply chain challenges are tied to the trucking industry. Companies that rely on truckers to move products throughout their supply chain may benefit from this development over time.
Bonus Supply Chain Innovation: The CloudLogix Platform
In a discussion about supply chain technology, we couldn’t leave out our CloudLogix supply chain logistics platform! We have invested considerable resources into developing a robust platform that simplifies the supply chain for our customers:
- Connect all of your supply chain partners in one location.
- Improve communication and eliminate mistakes through a centralized view.
- Achieve end-to-end shipment visibility between all stakeholders.
- Generate accurate reports in real-time through the power of centralized data.
- Integrate with your existing software tools (e.g., ERP) to seamlessly manage data across the entire supply chain.
The added benefit is that we offer tiered pricing to provide you with access to the software features and functionality that fit your supply chain. With CloudLogix, you get what you need, not what you don’t!
By tapping into the power of our platform to streamline the supply chain for your company, you can spend elsewhere on exciting new technology that will help you grow the capabilities of your company.
– We invite you to learn more about the CloudLogix platform and other exciting supply chain innovations in the industry. Subscribe to our email newsletter to receive timely updates directly to your inbox! Simply drop your email address in the sign-up box at the bottom of this page.
– Ready to schedule a demo of CloudLogix? Get in touch with us today to find out more about how we can support your company.