Optimising networks with the Internet of Things

on August 1, 2017

It comes as news to no one that the global logistics industry is big. The parcel industry alone saw 11.8 billion shipments in the United States in 2015 with an additional combined 16.1 billion in Japan, Germany, France and the UK. One of the largest areas of growth in this sector is in cross border shipping, parcels that are distributed outside of their country of origin, which is evolving at twice the rate of domestic. The global shift to e-commerce is one of the more obvious factors leading to increased shipping volumes, however other sectors have seen changes in regulation and trade deals lead to a greater ability to move items across the globe.

This surge in cross border shipping has propped up what may well be an overall growth in shipping volume of 20% between 2016 and 2018. Pressure to deliver large volumes of parcels in a short period of time has led to a change in the way shippers do business. From the way that items are stored, changes in fleets, to the way companies hire employees the face of logistics is changing. While the constraints of volume and time present certain hurdles for supply chains shipping between countries throws in a third dimension that must also be addressed.

The hurdles created by this evolution of the industry have created a complexed web of carriers, modes of transport, 3PL’s, 4PL’s and outsourcing. Infrastructure and systems in this scenario are forced to try and connect multiple companies, currencies, locations and deals creating a black hole of information and transparency for the growing volumes in these sectors. It’s this lack of knowledge that has put the power back into the hands of the shipper, with no other accurate information to go by the shippers are free to create and display whatever kind of information best fits their SLA’s. Things such as predictive scanning and customs hold ups are now common place in the formulation of the supply chain story.

“Managing multiple carriers and shipping goods across borders also creates new challenges and raises complexity.”

Lila Snyder

The hurdles created by this evolution of the industry have created a complexed web of carriers, modes of transport, 3PL’s, 4PL’s and outsourcing. Infrastructure and systems in this scenario are forced to try and connect multiple companies, currencies, locations and deals creating a black hole of information and transparency for the growing volumes in these sectors. It’s this lack of knowledge that has put the power back into the hands of the shipper, with no other accurate information to go by the shippers are free to create and display whatever kind of information best fits their SLA’s. Things such as predictive scanning and customs hold ups are now common place in the formulation of the supply chain story.

Real data from IoT can often place parcels continents apart from the information delivery companies give us

“The key to success for disruptors is the current lack of total visibility. Providers which can shed light on the blind spots in the supply chain have a chance to change the game”

Wolfgang Lehmacher

The Internet of Things (IoT) continues to be recognised as one of the biggest future trends in the logistics industry. A world of connected sensors that has been effectively enabling cities to manage their traffic flows, farmers monitor their crops and retailers to analyse their foot traffic is now making its way meaningfully into global supply chains. Business insider estimates that the global spending on solutions to connect the logistics industry will top twenty billion in a little over two years’ time. Figures such as this suggest that research and development done within the industry has pointed towards the IoT as a sustainable solution to increasing visibility and efficiency at a parcel, shipment, truck and network level.

Image via Business insider

“The Internet of Things is poised to transform the delivery and logistics industry and relieve stress for retailers, delivery companies, and consumers.”

BI Intelligence

ParceLive is bringing the vision of transparency to networks using the IoT with an all in one tracking service. Using a multi sensor data set and global connectivity as an enabler networks will now be able to rely on varied and meaningful data on which to create actionable workflows. But the information doesn’t stop with location, users now have the ability to gather a whole host of other valuable data about their supply chain. A parcels state, security and condition can now also be measured in real time with the ability to view its temperature, humidity and whether the box has been opened, dropped or tilted.

With supply chain issues now identified via live data ParceLive creates the ability to put the knowledge, and therefore power, back in your hands. Being able to answer potential questions on shipments with informed replies as well as exposing and resolving chinks in the supply chain will become key in streamlining logistics efficiency. Taking the focus away from the carrier or even the country by embedding ParceLive at parcel level means that current logistics challenges such as cross border shipping can be handled without the reliance on a complicated web of 3rd party knowledge and systems.

While the cost saving benefits of using ParceLive’s data service are clear, the Channel Partner based model also allows for a revenue generating opportunity. Partners of ParceLive are able to take the service and mould it as their own. With easy to integrate API’s creating a seamless data flow and branding opportunities available, channel partners are able to display data however they like in a commercial model that fits their needs.

If you are interested in becoming a part of the next generation of technology in Logistics and offering live tracking as a service to your customers click below to receive more information and to arrange a live trial.

 

Stephen HartnettOptimising networks with the Internet of Things

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