Logistics and Transportation

Digital Transformation in the Logistics and Transportation Industry.

The supply chain is becoming digitized and that’s good news for logistics businesses. Not a news flash, but the supply chain and logistics industries are in the midst of a major transition. First Digital specialises in digital evolution. We take what you have, integrate a layer of technology and try to improve on current state. It can take many forms, but, the underlying goal is to replace inefficient legacy systems and processes with new technologies to improve performance, increase visibility and control, and enable logistics businesses to have relevant information at their fingertips. In simple terms it’s about moving critical information away from paper-based systems and out of spreadsheets and instead connect traditionally siloed systems to unify data so real-time decisions can be made.

Technology has drastically impacted our lives. It’s high time the supply chain caught up.

Getting goods from A to B costs money and investing in a traditional supply chain requires long-term contracts, fixed assets and mountains of paperwork to manage the operation. Then entire teams are dedicated to reducing supply chain costs and making it leaner. But, not having all the information or relegating data to spreadsheets makes it difficult to make decisions, especially when the regular frequency for reviewing operations and plans is on a quarterly basis. More often than not, they were often necessary, but clunky cost centres, not strategic opportunities. Today, that doesn’t have to be the case. The supply chain of today can be completely different. Yes, your supply chain is still an investment and efficiency is still important, but now efficiency is achievable in a smarter way. Digital transformation and new technologies make creating an end-to-end supply chain easier. It’s true that much of the supply chain transformation has been driven by the evolution of retail and how consumers now buy products. eCommerce and omnichannel retail has forced some drastic but much-needed changes upon the operations that support the movement of goods.
Retail is one sector that has decentralized demand. Consumers aren’t just traveling to shops, they’re also ordering online, or ordering online and picking up in store – or at another drop location. The supply and demand model hasn’t been inverted, it’s been turned into a massive puzzle This, of course, has an impact on inventory planning and allocation, from sourcing raw materials all the way to the last mile of delivery. But, it’s also fair to say this isn’t going to change anytime soon.

Buying behaviours, technology, and the logistics that support these things will only continue to evolve.

The challenge many logistics organisations face is a range of disconnected systems, no overview of analytics and a siloed approach that leads to inconsistencies in data across inventory, supply, and demand. Add to this new Brexit laws for 2021 and without new technology-based supply chain solutions, starting a business or evolving to compete in today’s market wouldn’t just be cost-prohibitive; it would be a non-starter. As the world moves to on-demand supply requirements, machine learning, connective technology and algorithms to continually improve operations is the way to go. The flexibility demanded by retailers and brands is unprecedented leading to the creation of a new focus for the logistics network to optimise how goods move. First Digital will help with inventory management and planning to create more-accurate demand forecasts. We can assist with asset management, warehouse inventory location to shipment verification. We can connect your distribution centre to the haulage drivers via automation and workflows, use real-time data to anticipate delivery demands to inform your warehousing and fulfilment requirements to meet customer expectations. But of course, warehousing is only one piece in the supply chain. Other technology-based solutions exist that enable a faster and more efficient digital supply chains that aren’t cost centres, but instead competitive advantages. Digital Evolution within your supply chain doesn’t mean giving up your current solutions (though, in some cases, it could). Instead, it’s about augmenting what you have with new, digital solutions to create the visibility and control you need to continually improve operations.

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Any digital evolution programme should be a strategic, ongoing business initiative that involves people, processes, and technology... in that order. Before you invest, investigate...

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