Digitization is marching forward, bringing every industry along with it, including logistics. But which tech trends are hot topics that will fade away, and which ones will turn into 2018 logistics news? Here’s a quick look at a few top trends that are shaking up the industry.
Choice of Delivery
One trend making logistics news this year is the provision for customers of a wider variety of delivery options. No longer just a benefit offered by the biggest players in the industry, customized options are becoming a must. Companies that lingered behind this trend in 2017 will now need to step up their game to remain competitive. That means becoming more customer-centric and offering a variety of services, including re-routing shipments to more convenient locations and mapping real-time shipment locations – services that have only appeared in the past couple years.
Also called elastic logistics, scalable logistics refers to a company’s ability to remain flexible – expanding or shrinking to meet supply chain demands within a short period of time. This allows the company to remain agile and meet market fluctuations in a more cost-effective manner. Companies that can make these changes remain profitable when supply chain demand shifts. To be scalable, companies must incorporate automation and improve warehouse management efficiency. They must also closely monitor geographic requirements, cost control, priority deliveries, and distribution channels to be flexible.
Analytics-Driven Anticipatory Logistics
Big data is everywhere, and analytics help businesses predict demand and recognize logistics patterns. It’s easy to assume that certain holidays will drive up product demand. But anticipatory logistics take product planning beyond the calendar by using big data. For instance, if consumers within a specific geographical area are doing frequent Google searches for a new brand and model of tv, the company making that TV can benefit from the data and adjust their production to appropriately meet release-date demand. That’s anticipatory logistics at work.
By knowing which 2018 logistics trends are here to stay, you can better anticipate your customers’ needs and position your company to meet them.