The pandemic created many challenges for supply chains as it created an imbalance between supply and demand, which affected global supply chains. However, it is crucial to make new resolutions to ensure that your logistics business is in line with the current trends in the new year. We will look at how you can set resolutions according to the current trends to ensure business growth.
Logistics is a process that requires managing how resources are acquired, stored, and transported until they reach their desired destination. Logistics management aims to ensure that there is always the right amount of resources and input at any given time and that the resources reach their final destination in proper condition while ensuring that they are also delivered to the correct internal or external customer. The following are some resolutions that logistics businesses can set in 2022.
1. Use automation
The logistics industry is quite labour-intensive, and with the industry continuing to grow, there has become a greater demand for technological innovation. Logistics companies must begin to use further automation in the processes that they are involved in, whether this is picking items from the shelves or delivering products to the door. In 2022, we are likely to see even more advances in automated services.
More options will likely be available for automation. They will become more accessible as machine-driven automation was democratised and it was available for the biggest names in the business. However, this year logistics operations of every size will have the opportunity to upgrade their services and make use of automation wherever they can due to the surge in the value of warehouse robotics. Logistics companies can benefit significantly from automation for repetitive tasks as it will free their human labour force to concentrate on the essential functions and services.
2. Focusing on last-mile delivery
Last-mile delivery refers to end-to-end delivery transporting goods directly from the warehouse to the customer. In recent years, last-mile has become the standard in the industry as it is expected and not just recommended. Consumers require cheap, fast and accurate delivery, and businesses that fail to provide these things will be negatively affected. Last-mile delivery had been a challenge for small-to-medium companies as they relied heavily on third-logistics; however, there will likely be a shift to last-mile as a service in the new year. Using last-mile as a service poses significant benefits as it is more cost-effective than using a third-party delivery company. It also enables businesses to provide their customers with a personalised customer experience, which improves their brand image.
3. Using the cloud
Using cloud-based computing ensures that your business has the upper hand when it comes to managing your supply chain. Cloud-based computing enables logistics companies to improve their reliability, facilitate their scalability, and reduce their maintenance costs. They will also benefit from better data retention and security improvement. Cloud systems can be applied to various parts of their operational processes. For example, cloud-based enterprise resource planning (ERP) assists in managing autonomous trucks. Cloud software also enables easier planning and packaging and other benefits in processes, such as back-office operations and product shipping.
4. Localising the supply chain
One of the ways to ensure that your logistic company achieves success is by ensuring that you localise your supply chain. With customers requiring that everything is available for fast fulfilment and at a reasonable price, it is crucial to have a localised supply chain to ensure that you can leverage multiple locations to fulfil orders. The market has always been highly competitive. However, with on-demand delivery, it has become a differentiator. Same-day delivery was unheard of; however, now it has become something that many customers expect.
Suppose your business previously managed inventory at a regional level. In that case, you must shift to fulfilling orders from local stores as it will allow you to use local inventory when you desire. Using stock at a local level will mean that you will fulfil orders from stores or urban fulfilment centres. Using local stores will also mean that deliveries will be made quickly and efficiently, which boosts the customer’s experience and keeps up with supply chain trends.
5. Forecast inventory and delivery needs
Businesses have been experiencing higher volumes of last-mile delivery, which does not come as a surprise. Therefore, logistics providers must take the time to prepare for peak season. Businesses must know what to expect when it comes to order demand and delivery processing and where and how to deal with inventory. It has become crucial that logistics managers use SCM technology to forecast inventory and delivery. Hence, they know what to expect and deal with demand surges before the rush begins. Supply chain technology has become essential as it allows increasing visibility into supply chain data that has never been possible before.
Your business can use predictive analytics and big data to generate insights that can help anticipate or be used to respond to any events or disruptions that might occur. Companies can also use artificial intelligence and machine learning to turn the supply chain data into assets to improve business operations. Logistics management software can also be utilised to plan and forecast inventory and delivery issues which ensures that businesses are aware of real-time problems that occur along the way.
6. Emphasise sustainability
Transportation is one of the biggest contributors to carbon emissions, and with demand surging due to ecommerce, it has become essential that companies focus on sustainability. The logistics industry has been facing pressure through customer expectations for sustainable delivery. It is crucial that your business looks for ways to reduce, measure, track, and report on carbon emissions and communicate to customers how you are reducing emissions. Embedding green logistics practices, especially through sustainable ecommerce fulfilment options, will assist your business in remaining competitive and increasing profitability.