From manually operated forklifts to today’s robotic machines, warehousing facilities have come a long way. The various autonomous facilities not only help in inventory placement, but also record and verify locations (mobile robots) and transport goods while ensuring safety and fast delivery of goods. With proper management of inventory, a company can plan and schedule better, as inventory visibility helps in exact knowledge about material management and plan for optimum order management. The management of multiple carriers provides choices based on rates or transit times all on one screen instead of contacting multiple carriers. Automation helps in increasing storage density and eases labor overheads, providing companies with more tactical autonomy in their network-footprint decisions.
With Wearable Technology, employees do not need to stop and write every detail manually. It also provides live tracking of goods. It can also monitor vital signs so that health problems (exhaustion, heart attacks) among the warehouse workers can be prevented (especially during working hours), making technology more humane. Employees and wearables work in unison as it helps in reducing inaccuracy, thus enhancing safety and increasing productivity.
Artificial intelligence (AI) can enable much in supply chain, physical machines such as robots and drones can complete deliveries despite bad traffic or unfavorable weather conditions ensuring an easy flow of goods from the point of origin to the point of consumption. But this capability will take some time to be adopted as a common reality as safety and security concerns have to be first addressed and resolved for their commercial usage in public areas. Moreover, as per the research shared by The Economist, the implementation of AI in logistics and supply chain can generate its potential economic value from $1.3 trillion to $2 trillion per year.
The role of technology has changed significantly in the logistics and supply chain industry and it still has the potential to completely change the face of the industry. It is therefore a direct enabler of business growth. The economy widely affected by this industry is all set to grow with the new trends and technologies.