Here Is How Technology Is Going the Way and Showing the Way to the Cargo Industry
A few years back, the connection between technology and cargo industry wasn’t very strong because technology in the cargo industry was thought to be useless. However, tables are turning now and the cargo industry has revitalised itself a great deal by making use of technology.
Even though there are still many things which need to be improved, however, a change is already imminent. International trade is growing very fast and so are the numbers of vessels and cargo volumes.
This growth puts a lot of pressure on cargo industry in general and on ports, warehouses and cargo companies in particular. Therefore, technology had to come to the rescue and it did exactly the same.
A number of forward-looking ports are executing the digital revolution in order to enhance their cargo handling capacities. In addition to that, steps are being taken by freight forwarders and handlers in ways to accommodate the latest tech trends.
This practice is undoubtedly taking the cargo industry to the next level. Let’s take a look on how each and every step in freight forwarding is being revolutionized by the technology.
Technology is working like a charm in making the cargo operations run smoothly through the use of automatic identification. This feature covers the transition process of cargo. Automatic identification by handheld or automatic scanners renders the process efficient and time-saving.
How it actually works is that a digital code is imprinted on the boxes of the goods that are needed to be shipped. Handheld scanners are enabled to scan and recognise these codes which in turn helps the cargo handlers to manage goods accordingly. It mitigates the chances of mistakes and ensures a flawless distribution.
Another plus point of automatic identification is that the probability of goods getting lost is significantly reduced. This shipment tracing system can save the UK retailers a staggering £48.5 million each year. Quite a saving, right?
Autonomous Trucks for Cargo
Another boost for cargo Industry is the entry of all-new autonomous trucks for cargo. Autonomous or driverless trucks are the future of the auto industry and the adoption of these by the cargo industry is a good omen.
In many areas around the world, goods movement through autonomous trucks is already happening on the test basis. These technology-laden trucks save a lot of time and make things easier for the freight forwarders. Zero human error, on time delivery, fewer chances of accidents and safe shipment of goods, what else a shopper wants?
Many progressive automakers such as Uber, Volkswagen and Mercedes are striving to take lead in the truck industry by manufacturing technology driven trucks. In the initial phase, these trucks will take cargo to the destinations and then human drivers take them over for the last-mile delivery.
It can be said with surety that these tech trucks will put the cargo industry on next level.
Warehouses boast a significant position in the supply chain and play a crucial role in deciding the pace of the whole process. A warehouse is a place where goods are stored for a short period of time before shipping them to their destinations.
Therefore, how these goods are handled at the warehouse decide the speed of the whole procedure. Gone are the days when warehouses were seen as mere cost-centres. However, this advanced era demands ultra-modern, state-of-the-art warehouses which can store and release goods in the least possible time.
Automated warehouses are now being built where commodities are handled by robots. Storing goods in their specific compartments, arranging them in perfect order and supplying them in time are the hallmarks of automated warehouses.
Machines are in charge there to pick up and transports goods to their specific compartments. Automated warehouses offer efficient and productive cargo handling coupled with reduced costs.
Predictive or Anticipatory Shipping
Anticipatory shipping is a ground-breaking idea and Amazon has already filed a patent for it. Basically, Anticipatory shipping is a system which revolves around the idea of transporting goods to consumers ahead of demand.
This system learns from the previous orders and a few other factors to anticipate when will the customers of a particular area need these goods again. Therefore, the system analyses these statistics and sends the delivery beforehand so that the goods do not go out of stock and customers do not have to wait for them.
Predictive shipping will add another dimension to the cargo industry and is bound to gain a lot of popularity.
Shipment Status Monitoring
Who wouldn’t want to stay in touch with their shipment while being hundreds or thousands of miles away from it? Technology has paved the way to stay connected to the goods while they are on their way. Tracking and tracing the cargo in real-time is not a big deal anymore.
Real-time cargo monitoring works with the help of satellite connected sensors which are attached with the cargo and keeps the shipper updated about the current location and status of the consignment. This technology allows the shipper to stay calm and contended knowing that the shipment is safe and inbound.
Moreover, this tracking service also shows the estimated time of the delivery so that people don’t have to keep waiting all the time. A notifications service is also available which keeps sending notifications after specific periods of time about the status of the shipment until it reaches the destination.
Last-mile Delivery by Drones
Last-mile delivery means the shipment of goods from the transport centre to the final supply destination which is typically a personal residential or official address. It is usually observed that the amount of time taken for the hub to hub transportation is almost the same as the hub to final destination delivery time period.
Steps are taken to reduce this last-mile delivery time and drones are at the top of the list. The growing demand for more and more efficient last-mile logistics has forced the big freight forwarders to use drones for carrying out this job.
Drones are satellite navigation enabled unmanned aerial vehicles which are controlled by computers. Since drones do not operate on roads, they take lesser time than vehicles for the last-mile deliveries.
Another plus point of drones is that no matter wherever the destination is, be it a cottage in the forest or a flat in a sky-high building, drones will reach there within no time.