Over the past decade or so, technological innovation and advancements have been rapid. Leaps and strides have been made within the field of Artificial Intelligence (AI), in particular, and these AI systems are now revolutionizing all sorts of industries.
Many experts have highlighted the logistics management industry as one of the industries that stand to benefit the most from AI, on account of the huge volumes of data that logistics service providers produce.
The machine learning capabilities, huge computer power/speed, and ability to process ‘big data’ of AI mean that AI systems can be used to more improve and more effectively manage logistics operations.
Here are 5 changes to logistics management that AI has already brought:
1. Increased Demand Forecasting Accuracy
One of the biggest challenges that have faced logistics management service providers relates to being able to accurately forecast changes in demand. The reason that this is so challenging is that it necessitates the consideration of lots of different factors, such as sales numbers, changes in weather, and other consumer attributes.
As AI is able to track and analyze huge volumes of data, logistics management service providers are now able to use AI software to measure and analyze all of this data in tandem and use it to inform and adjust forecasts in real-time.
2. Reduced Operational Costs and Faster Processes
AI technology is being used to reduce operational costs by providing new insights into all sorts of processes, allowing logistics companies to streamline tasks and become more efficient. AI can also increasingly take the place of real humans by analyzing data and completing tasks that would previously have been beyond the capabilities of a machine.
For example, AI tech like intelligent robotic sorting can now sort letters, parcels, and shipment pallets more efficiently and at greater speeds, thus reducing both time and costs. Special cameras can now even use AI technology to identify damage on cargo shipments and then take action to correct this damage.
3. Improved Communication Between All Parties
Third-party logistics providers and their clients can use AI to communicate more effectively with their clients and customers, boosting relations. Many logistics providers are adding their own AI to flexible, enterprise logistics software solutions such as 3PL software by Silver BulletTechnologies.
And for example, Amazon’s voice-activated Echo device (powered by their AI software, ‘Alexa’) can now be used by customers to track DHL package shipments by simply asking it ‘where is my parcel?’.
This creates a more personalized customer experience for the customer, improving customer satisfaction. As customer satisfaction is extremely important to businesses, this, in turn, facilitates trust and a stronger relationship between logistics providers and their business clients.
As you can see, AI is making waves in the logistics industry in all sorts of ways, but the benefits don’t end there. It’s being used in all sorts of ways to improve planning, facilitate communication, reduce costs, and optimize processes – and there’s more yet to come.
In the future, further advances in AI, self-driving forklifts, drones, and other futuristic tech looks set to revolutionize the logistics industry even further.
Madhu V Swamy is cofounder of Cumulations Technologies Pvt. Ltd.