The global supply chain has been growing at a fast rate over recent years and the logistics industry has become an essential part of the global system.With greater efficiency being required to speed up processes, technology has stepped in to create efficiencies and thereby save costs by introducing systems.
Logistics by definition, is providing the right product in good condition, in the right quantity, at the right time, at the right place and at a reasonable cost.
In order to achieve these goals, inventory management, handling, warehousing and transportation are crucial elements.
The technology world has brought best in class automated machinery, cloud computing, and online ordering and fulfillment for e-commerce business which grows stronger year on year.
Here are factors which we feel are important to help grow your logistics business.
Implementation of IT systems
In order to have control of information flow, inventory, and transportation, and in some cases pre-payment, one has to embrace and implement a highly efficient, ‘all singing, and all dancing system.’
Bringing in a system which will only achieve part of the job, is a mistake often made which results in inefficiencies, loss of business and a high price to put things right.
This is an important factor because the competition in the logistics world has become highly competitive and failing to reach the required service levels will have a negative result on the bottom line.
Automated handling, sorting and dispatching
Automation in logistics has resulted in replacing manual handling and has resulted in overall cost savings despite
an initial high investment cost.
The combination of software and an efficient conveyor handling system can automate, label preparation, checking, and printing of all necessary documents as well as a tracking system to follow progress through to final destination.
Such systems have seen substantial increases worldwide.
Automated machines have resulted in increased efficiency and helped reduce overall costs.
They are particularly useful on factory assembly lines as for example the automotive, computer, and other industries which need precision assembly.
Robotics has not only substantially reduced the labour force costs but has reduced the time taken to complete the assembly of any article.
The producers of self-driving delivery vehicles believe that they can reduce the costs of road transportation.
One element of any delivery is either physically taking the good from the vehicle and handing them over to the end customer or supervising the unloading of the goods by the client.
The use of GPS and other safeguard options on vehicles have generally helped increase efficiencies and safety
in delivery vehicles.
Although some logistics companies are venturing into the option of self-driving vehicles, we maintain that there is still some way to achieve overall perfection and efficiencies with them and it will be some time before we see the disappearance of drivers, sometimes two of them, in delivery trucks on our roads.
There is no denying the convenience, security, backup and efficiency benefits to be had from cloud computing. It also offers the possibility of easier interface between companies.
This is what has seen the substantial growth in cloud computing over the last few years, not only within the logistics industry but all other industries.
The logistics industry is very much a personal business, probably more so in SME’s rather than the big corporates.
We still need people to sell our services, clean the offices, answer the phone, run the warehouses, take care of IT and computers and other hardware, drive the delivery vehicles, operate the forklifts and other equipment, and communicate with clients in a positive friendly manner.
Basic training is essential to make sure everyone understands how to perform their duties and to maintain a commercial approach when communicating with clients.
Whether it be the import or export operative, the warehouse team, the delivery drivers, all of them can give a good impression of the company to the clients.
Good company teamwork is as essential to promoting and improving the business as the premises, the office equipment, warehouse, and delivery vehicles.
Without people, we have no business and having the right people, properly trained, with a sense of belonging in the company, is a standard that all logistics companies should subscribe to.