Smart solutions for supply chain

In the first Industrial Revolution, the use of steam helped mechanize production. In the second Industrial Revolution, electricity made mass production possible. In the third Industrial Revolution, information technology and electronics enabled automation. Now we are during the fourth Industrial Revolution, hence Industry 4.0.

The logistics industry is living in a new era, with new technologies for order management, communication with order takers, real-time load monitoring, and much more. Smart production uses new technologies to organize company processes. To remain competitive, businesses must reinvent themselves and adopt these technologies.

The term logistics 4.0 was first mentioned in Hanover in 2011 at the specialized trade fair IAA. The term refers to modern logistics integrating: the network, digitization, and the cloud. The objectives are to shorten the distance to the end consumer, facilitate communication, and optimize the supply chain.

Rising e-commerce is increasing competition between logistics providers. Brands must make more efforts to deliver their goods faster. Getting new customers and having commercial success are directly related to the ability of companies to optimize transport operations; people expect better traceability of their orders and expedited deliveries of no more than 48 hours.

Using artificial intelligence, companies can predict market tendencies and plan their production to meet the demand. Industry 4.0 technologies provide real-time visualization of company stocks which allows planning distribution and operating warehouses.

Data science also allows generating knowledge to turn it into information and recommendations to improve the supply chains using technologies like artificial intelligence and machine learning.

Other tools are simulation models that allow the creation of digital twins. A digital twin is a virtual representation of a physical object or process. In logistics, it is used for monitoring, diagnostics, and prognostics to optimize asset performance.

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