Logistics

Logistics (85)

New Tech Is Helping Lower Inventory Levels Across The Supply Chain

Supply chain and logistics industry is going through a tremendous transformation made possible by innovation and new technology. Such transformation is causing customers to increasingly demand more. Consequently, competition is heating up and logistics providers are doing everything within their power to stay in the market. Technological advancements are the leading differentiators that companies are exploiting in the industry.

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2019 Check-in: The Adoption of Essential Supply Chain Trends

We’re a little over halfway through 2019 —a good time to look back at my predictions for the supply chain industry, including where we are in artificial intelligence (AI) adoption, the need for better data to drive predictability, and the uberization of freight. Earlier in the year discussions and reports indicated that a responsive, real-time supply chain would be the key differentiator among businesses as the year progresses. However, this isn’t a particularly new prediction — we’ve been heralding such an arrival for at least a decade — and Gartner noted that despite their broad industry impact, such technologies have yet to be widely adopted. Slow adoption could be due to significant business and technological changes or limitations around its own capabilities, but it begs the question, how will these trends become reality if organizations can’t implement the advancements necessary to create a more efficient and effective supply chain?

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Smart Warehouses Are Here! Are You Ready?

Warehousing is witnessing a dramatic shift from traditional human labor to an army of robots. For example, Amazon has been adding robots to its warehouse workforce since 2012 for moving items and assisting human workers. These robots have helped reduce operating costs at each warehouse by 20%, which translates to almost $22 million. The cost savings are mainly derived by improving warehouse efficiency. According to one report, after deploying the robots, cycle times were reduced by 15 minutes from 75 minutes to 60 minutes. Inventory space has also grown by 50% due to smarter use of space.

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Supply Chain is expected to be a beneficiary of 5G wireless

5G technology is here with us and is already causing a lot of discussions and eliciting reactions from different industries. 5G wireless connectivity is expected to bring benefits to the supply chain through many fronts that will make processes and operations faster, easier, and more efficient. To begin with, the Fifth Generation Wireless System (5G) is a successor of 4G and will employ signal wavelengths in ranges between 30 to 300 GHz to enhance the speed of data transfer and reduce the levels of interference and interruption.

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Railroading the Supply Chain

“"OmniTRAX's management expertise and our Precision Scheduled Short Line Railroading... will bring this 100-year-old railroad to modern times, making it and our customer's businesses far more efficient and profitable," CEO of OmniTrax Inc. Kevin Shuba said in a statement after news hit Friday that the transportation provider acquired Winchester & Western Railroad for $105 million from their parent company Covia Holdings Corp. WW acknowledged that becoming part of OmniTRAX would enable them to implement operational strategies that only a logistics company can provide. The 103-year-old company is also looking forward to the support and leadership that OmniTRAX can provide for them.

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Amazon Small Business Opportunity

Amazon has been quietly gearing up to make a play in the “last-mile” delivery space. Previously, the e-commerce giant relied heavily on the United States Postal Service (USPS), United Parcel Service (UPS), and FedEx for delivery.  As their needs grow, Amazon has begun to test the waters as to what local delivery would mean for the company. So much so that they have recently announced that they will be hiring Amazon Delivery Service Partners (DSP) to meet their demands.

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The End of Amazon and FedEx

It was the break up heard all over the Supply Chain community. FedEx Express and Amazon have officially called it quits when it comes to U.S. domestic deliveries. The news was confirmed when FedEx decided not to renew their express shipping service contract with the e-commerce giant which is set to expire on June 30th. Amazon responded by diplomatically explaining to The Verge, ““We respect FedEx’s decision and thank them for their role serving Amazon customers over the years.” Express shipping tends to be the fastest way a package gets from point A to point B. Examples of express shipping includes same day, overnight, and next day shipping.

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Drones Are Becoming Part of the Logistics Industry

For decades, the logistics industry has been lagging behind in the adoption of technology in service provision. However, this has changed significantly over the past few years as a result of the increased adoption of various technologies most of which are aimed at increasing competitiveness and enhancing the provision of services.

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Last Mile Delivery Issues

When my husband and I lived in the city we were pretty lucky in that only a few of our packages ever got stolen from our front door steps. It helped that our front door had a little nook that drivers could discretely tuck our packages into, hiding them away from thieves (or porch pirates as they’re commonly referred to) in our neighborhood. My neighbors though weren’t so lucky as many of them saw their packages mysteriously disappear.

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Why EDI is not sufficient for tracking the cold supply chain and what is the solution.

It’s rare that I decry EDI, but I encourage a serious look into how and if this bastion of trade is keeping up with the needs of commerce and incorporating the most appropriate technologies. Here’s a look at what might be a shortcoming that needs to be addressed.

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