Elastic logistics is the new and evolved version of ‘lean supply chain movement’. As technology has caught up with logistics, latest delivery schedule and route planning help companies are on top of all market demand fluctuations and keep their products on shelves at all times or reach the consumer’s door within a day or two.
With technology, innovation is always around the corner. Some more than others. We have all seen the hikes in interest and following for tech innovations to have them fizzle out. We are at the start of such an upswing. Take a step further back, and you will get to the topic, Blockchain.
Technology has enabled us to record, plan, allocate, dispatch, track, validate, and analyze all freight movement from a single dashboard with clear and real-time actionable insights in an easy-to-understand format. This leads to an agile, reactive, and dynamic setup for a company’s transportation management system.
We recently integrated with Alexa, Google Assistant, Cortana, and Siri. Now, the manager can simply relax and instruct their personal assistant to fetch the information for them. Almost anyone can use the personal assistant without any hassle. It doesn’t matter if they are tech-savvy.
Polar Vortex can disrupt logistics movement pushing up freight rates due to a shortage of trucks and drivers. Shipments may be delayed either due to rerouting away from snow-blocked highways or, being detained due to traffic bottlenecks. Multi-modal transport via railroads and ports are also affected.
We saw last mile delivery being used as the key input in all omnichannel strategies. We saw localization in distribution strategies centered around making last mile delivery more effective. We also saw machine learning being implemented successfully in logistics and field workforce planning. These trends would be the greatest influencers in 2018 for logistics and field workforce management.
Jack Ma inaugurated the world’s first Digital Free Trade Zone in Malaysia to boost e-commerce and small to medium size enterprises (SMEs) in Southeast Asia. Considering Malaysia’s proclivity in the Asian region, This Digital Free Trade Zone (DFTZ) would act as a perfect platform for physical and virtual business set-ups to leverage the recent boom of online businesses. Malaysia’s DFTZ is set to handle more than $65 billion worth of goods at full functionality.
We now stand at the forefront of the optimization revolution. Never has sweeping transformational changes benefited multiple industries more than right now. GST holds up the promise of total realignment and restructuring of how logistics movement happens across the nation. There would some resistance from some companies, as many are set in the way they have been doing things over a period and are averse to any sudden change.
Field service management and logistics management have grown, as an industry, at 18% CAGR. How has this part of the economic world been immune to global market fluctuations? It’s simple. Logistics movement is an integral part of the business model of every company. You have a product or a service, you must take it to the market or bring the customer to your market.
The war is on. The lines are drawn. Retail and e-commerce have locked swords. Which side are you on? If these thoughts seem ominous to you, then don’t worry. There is peace ahead. Retail vs E-commerce is a new but heated battle. They are different, but not that different.