Innovations that Have Transformed Logistics and Trade

Innovation is key to growth in any industry and discipline - Shipping and Freight is no exception to this rule. Here is a look at the three key logistical innovations that have transformed the landscape of international trade over the last 60 years and something that is keeping the business of trade alive. The logistics of international trade can be defined by three key processes: the movement of goods or services, the measurement of this movement, and the processing of what is being moved. Each one of these processes face significant limiting factors when carried out on an international scale due to various geographical barriers (such as seas, mountains, and simply long distances). Therefore, the landscape of international trade as we understand it today has been shaped by the innovations in logistics that have helped us navigate and overcome these limiting factors. Innovations that have transformed logistics and international trade are; containeristion, information processing technologies, and fibre optic cables.

Transportation and logistics businesses around the globe are focused on maximizing supply chain efficiency in order to sustain profitability and viability. However, to reach this level of performance, they need to make end-to-end improvements. Complete visibility facilitates more effective, timely decisions and reduces delays through quicker detection of issues.

Fleet Management

When it comes to transportation and logistics, fleet management plays a critical role in managing maintenance schedules, everyday vehicle usage and service routes. In order to maximize productivity and operational efficiency, fleet downtime must be minimized. With mobile scanners, computers and RFID systems alone, enterprises can gain visibility into their assets and better streamline operations to keep their fleet moving. By replacing manual and hard-copy work orders with mobile devices, technicians save time and increase data accuracy. Furthermore, with realtime, accurate insight into maintenance history, parts availability and inventory records, technicians can relay information back to their central database. By leveraging connected, mobile devices, enterprises can capture, share and manage data around their moving assets across the enterprise. Connectivity also enables enterprises to communicate with their technicians anytime, anywhere, allowing them to be proactive with in-field repairs, maintenance, etc. With real-time updates on certain conditions such as bad weather or traffic, fleet technicians can better respond and/or prepare. For field technicians, real-time visibility into driver and vehicle performance is critical. This visibility can be used to increase the safety of technicians, reduce damaged inventory and decrease insurance-related costs all of which are critical to an enterprise’s bottom line. Additionally, with real-time insight, technicians and drivers can respond to customer service inquiries in a timely manner. This helps personnel know when and where to allocate their time - improving the organization’s overall performance and customer service. Furthermore, with the ability to securely monitor their equipment and environment in real time, field service technicians can take action before problems arise. With the IoT, companies can gain intelligence remotely around their assets in the field, allowing them to facilitate needbased maintenance and eliminating unnecessary and/or reactive responses.

Advances in mobile technology and the IoT are dramatically improving the way transportation and logistics businesses operate. The Enterprise Asset Intelligence delivered through these solutions is what enables organizations to pinpoint inefficiencies in real time, improving throughput and helping them build progressive plans to move toward innovation.