If there was one good thing that came out of the pandemic is that it has accelerated the digitization of their customer and supply chain interactions and of their internal operations by 3-4 years. At both organizational and industry levels, technology adoption has taken a quantum leap. The logistics sector is undergoing a transformation and consolidation, organizing the highly fragmented industry. Organizations are preparing themselves better for upcoming disruptions with new and efficient protocols at the plants. Resilience and agility are the need of the hour and companies are adopting digital technologies to remain competitive in the face of disruptions. Late deliveries, lack of visibility and control, and manual errors have pushed organizations for technology adoption like never before.
Collaborative Execution – Preparing Today’s Supply Chains
Ever since the COVID pandemic hit the country, businesses have been facing unpredictable out-of-stock situations, stranded trucks, and a lack of visibility into their supply chains. The modern supply chain poses a host of new challenges for leaders to grapple with - increasing costs, a slew of disruptions, and the complexities posed by new distribution and sales channels add to the complexity of managing operations efficiently. There is an urgent need for improved demand and distribution visibility, integrating new channels, and improving control over quality and speed of delivery in both the first and last miles of the supply chain.
The next stage of productivity improvement is expected to be delivered by the deployment of technologies to facilitate collaborative execution by integrating processes across the shipper and vendor organization to provide end-to-end visibility and get better control through the transaction execution. With a tech-enabled supply chain, organizations can better allocate critical resources and organizations have protocols and SoPs for their manufacturing facilities as well as field and office staff to continue operations to steer through the disruptions.
Digital Transportation Management Systems
Digital Transportation Management Systems enable businesses to be proactive in bringing operations under control. The core of the approach is the optimization and collaborative execution framework, which is executed as a cloud-based platform with allied services to provide the full solution. A TMS helps to deliver a critical competitive advantage through complete visibility and control over their transport operations. The results are to meet the new expectation of the digital future - improved responsiveness to changing customer demands and resilience in the face of disruptions.
Cloud Technology and Mobile Computing
Cloud technology has completely transformed all the levels of supply chains from planning and sourcing to logistics and distribution. Traditional supply chain management systems are very transactional compared to cloud systems which in turn can drive unparalleled visibility and control and make supply chains flexible and resilient. Cloud-based organizations have not only benefited from increased cost savings but have also attained never before agility.
The last-mile and warehousing section has gained substantial importance due to the rapid growth of e-commerce and a strong move toward direct-to-consumer. Even the large consumer companies have started joining the e-commerce wave with their own direct-to-consumer initiatives. The key technology trends for this segment include digitizing the warehousing and last-mile logistics. AI-driven automation, direct-to-consumer initiatives, and acceleration towards sustainability are also bringing into focus complex technology solutions.