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#Trends that will shape the #logistics industry in 2018

As #logistics becomes the #backbone of every #industry like #retail, #eCommerce, #FMCG, #hospitality, and #healthcare etc.- #businesses are #aligning their #strategies with respect to the ongoing and upcoming #logistics #trends, i.e., #Robotics, #Artificial #Intelligence (AI) and #Machine-Learning #algorithms

Based on FarEye’s observation of the past two years, here are the trends that will shape the #logistics #industry in 2018:

1. #Blockchain- #Blockchain and AI first made its presence felt in the #logistics #industry early this year. With the security and #transparency it offers, #blockchain is an #impenetrable way to store and share the transnational data and improves credibility with fool proof transactions. For example, if customer’s ID proof is available digitally through a block chain structure, he cannot fudge it at the time of delivery. Similarly, the unique block chain enabled registration number of every bike can be mapped against the delivery job IDs. By 2021, 25% of the large global companies will be piloting or using artificial intelligence and block chain based automation in #transnational procurement.

2. #Delivery Of Choice- If the #customers were not already #spoilt for choices in terms of buying portals, #products, and crazy discounts, they will also have option to choose amongst #logistics companies to receive their shipment by. There were only a handful of #eCommerce companies offering this feature in 2017 but the trend will pick up in 2018. This could be the game changer for #logistics companies, as they can no more afford to be in the background. They have to compete against each other with differentiated, #customer-oriented services. Recall the fierce competition that came in telecom industry when mobile number portability was first introduced. It brought down the prices and provided many new service features to the customers that were unthinkable earlier.

3. Rise of #Elastic #Logistics-#Elastic #logistics refers to the flexibility to expand and shrink capabilities to align with the demands within the #supply #chain at a given time frame. Flexible #automation #solutions increase the agility and #elasticity of the #logistics #infrastructure to cost effectively meet market #fluctuations. It is not a “one size fits all” solution. However, it provides a customized answer to requirements like cost control, #warehouse #management, #geographic #restrictions, #distributions #channels, priority deliveries, and much more. Interplay of demand and supply defines the day-to-day operations in the logistics & supply chain industry. To handle the changing demand and the #fluctuations in the orders, logistics companies are making their operations #elastic to plan the capacity according to the requirement. More and more companies will be taking fleet through outsourcing and the third-party providers. With optimal utilization, companies can deliver delight while keeping the costs intact and the quest to beat the demand will be just increasing. It helps by

a. Enhancing #Customer #Experience

b. Adding Real Time Visibility

c. Connecting All #Business #Processes

d. Provides Agility & Availability

4. Perfect Order Deliveries- One more interesting trend that cropped up during the last spell of the year -2017 was perfect orders. The complexities of last mile make the odds against fulfilling a perfect order overwhelming, and perfect orders are the ultimate measure of customer satisfaction. Perfect orders are the percentage of orders delivered to the right place, with the right product, at the right time, in the right condition, in the right package, in the right quantity, with the right documentation, to the right customer, with the correct invoice.

5. Rise of #Drones and #Smart-Glasses: With #automation and #mobility being the support system to #survive the competition, #smart-glasses and drones are will drive the logistics #performance to next level. Backed by augmented reality, integration with smart glasses will make deliveries easier by hands-free route searches, face recognition for error-free deliveries and personalized deliveries. With the rise in unmanned aerial vehicles and smart glasses adoption, the operational #efficiencies of first and #lastmilelogistics can be increased, increased flexibility and speed of delivery in complex and congested #metro cities.

6. Data-driven #Logistics #Driving #Anticipatory #Logistics-. By anticipating the demand and studying the data-patterns, companies can predict the demand, plan and align the operations well in advance. In the ever-changing business, staying ahead in delivering the service is the key and data-driven #logistics will help enhance the future of #logistics. #Companies will adopt big-data #algorithms, #data-visualization #techniques and smarter #analytics to boost process efficiency and service quality by shortening the delivery times. However, the big change in 2018 will be that the companies would use geography based search trends to anticipate demand of certain products in a region and ship in advance. Therefore, if the people in Delhi have been searching a lot about a new book a week prior to its release, it is a good idea to ship some extra copies to the nearest hub and make the most of this opportunity.

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