The logistics and supply chain industries typically pave the way for others to follow. From setting high standards for customer service to establishing a roadmap for operational efficiency, the logistics space has a huge impact on all other industries in one way or another.
As we continue into 2020, many supply chain and logistics businesses are starting to integrate solutions that help them improve their operations across multiple platforms.
This is where the power of IoT technology really starts to shine.
So, with 2020 in full swing, let’s explore the top 10 IoT technology trends that can benefit logistics and supply chain businesses as the year carries on...
How Does the Internet of Things (IoT) Impact Logistics?
The supply chain depends on the smooth and efficient movement of freight. To accomplish this, technology is used to reduce the lead time of communication, making it mobile-ready and accessible through multiple devices and locations.
At its root – this is the Internet of Things – using cloud-specific or satellite connectivity to expedite freight movement.
However, IoT also has a hand in the operational and review process. Vehicle sensors, telematics, and tracking software and hardware solutions help supply chain businesses monitor their operations, analyze the data and make fine-tuned adjustments.
Reviewing the IoT Trends for Logistics
There are 10 specific solutions that IoT technology is looking to help resolve or improve. Some are short term solutions, while others are designed to improve efficiency over the long haul.
Find Ways to Save Costs
Cost savings is at the top of the list for most supply chains. Whether it’s saving hours of service, reducing lead time, or finding ways or reducing waste – IoT technology can help supply chain businesses track, analyze and improve areas – targeted specifically for cost savings.
Discover Ways to Reduce Vehicle Emissions
As our global society continues to evolve into an environmentally conscious world, transportation companies are tasked to discover ways of reducing vehicle emissions. Let’s be clear – emissions are 100% unburnt fuel.
Most diesel-powered engines only burn 85 percent of the fuel that enters the combustion chamber. This is because diesel is comprised of larger carbon molecules that are much harder to burn. IoT technology can monitor vehicle engine efficiency while on the road, stream that data to multiple parties, so they can learn on the go.
Improve Fleet Management
IoT is also used and integrated into today’s modern Fleet Management Software solutions. It permits those with multiple pieces of equipment to streamline the process of maintaining and repairing equipment – to reduce on-road failure or delays in freight movement or customer delivery.
A Focus on Customer Satisfaction
The name of the game is not just to ensure customers are happy – it is to exceed their expectations. With the supply chain and logistics companies, this happens through order fulfillment. From the warehouse where items are picked, packaged, and shipped, through the supply chain, and finally, to white glove or last-mile logistics, IoT technology has a hand in each phase.
Connectivity Through the Chain
The final short-term trend in IoT technology is the goal of improving connectivity through the supply chain. Many industry leaders are using Transportation Management Software to expedite the communication process to vendors, suppliers, shippers, carriers and fulfillment centers. This improved connectivity is made possible through cloud-based solutions, that allow stakeholders to access platforms from multiple devices and several locations.
While the short-term solutions can help companies better compete for today’s customer, long-term is intended to provide a blueprint for success. Here are a few of the long-term IoT trends in the market that logistics companies can follow.
Integration of 5G LTE Technology
As internet bandwidth improves – consumers and stakeholders look to connect to the network quicker, faster, and with improved efficiency. This is the power of 5G – and those who use IoT technology solutions that can connect to these speeds will have a competitive edge over those who don’t.
Review End-User Input
Receiving customer input or that of the end-user of any product helps a company improve its service offerings. Whether it’s using IoT technology to power online surveys, mobile apps, or to permit drivers to send instant updates to their carrier networks, IoT technology can set up a supply chain business for improved input from those who matter most.
Automation of Processes
Companies spend billions each year on manual entry or review of processes. From customer online contact forms to payment gateways, discovering better ways of expediting these processes, helps any logistics business in the long-term. Automation with order management software, or customer relationship management platforms can help.
Improved Regulatory Compliance
While the current administration in the White House has eliminated many regulations – there are some that are expanding –, especially with the trucking or transportation industry. IoT technology is likewise used to help improve regulatory compliance.
The final long-term Internet of Things trend is the integration of autonomous driving equipment. Testing is currently underway with many self-driving technology companies and power-unit manufacturers. In fact, a cross-country test was just completed – with positive results.