Technology has improved international trade in multiple ways. It has made the movement of goods more efficient, helped manage vessels at ports, and optimized trade shipping routes. So which technologies are impacting us on a logistics and supply chain level?
The Three Main IT Innovations Improving Logistics and Supply Chain Management
The following innovations have shaped the future of international logistics and are at the center of some of the biggest companies in the world, like Amazon:
1. Real-Time Data and Interactions
Thanks to GPS, online purchases are now a common thing. Through its tracking technology, customers and sellers can follow their packages in real-time, taking away some of the complications that come with shipments. Another implementation of this technology is real-time stock checking, which allows business owners and managers to now spot risks, errors, and opportunities faster than ever.
2. Warehouse Automation and Inventory Management Systems
Alongside tracking and data, automation has lowered the costs of warehouse management as well, especially by automating recurring tasks that require hundreds of hours of human labor. Moreover, because data is being collected consistently, IT departments can now make better predictions, allowing businesses to create long-term financial plans while building strategic relations between manufacturers, suppliers, and distributors.
3. Identification Technologies
Of course, none of this can work without a way to identify the goods and their locations. That’s why barcoding is such a crucial innovation when it comes to logistics. Because we can now identify a product with a simple code that stores all its data, we can:
- Minimize human error
- Lower the amount of paperwork required for its commercialization
- Identify an item at any stage of the supply chain
What’s to Come Now?
Besides these three technologies that have already been implemented as industry standards, there is still one technology trying to make its way to our every-day processes: blockchain. This technology is essential not only because it helps create a safer way to do business but also because it is changing how we share data, close deals, and manage shipments.
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