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Logistics 4.0: Understand how technology is improving tracing and visibility

The 4.0 logistics, besides being connected processes and equipment, means that each time higher number of data will allow the functions to be automatized through modern and smart algorithms, capable of “learning” and improving a series of logistics routine tasks.

The implementation of identification and tracking devices, for example, will lead to a better performance in warehouse management and to the reduction of the logistics costs. According to the PwC data disclosed in the last year, the investment in industry 4.0, specifically in the transport and logistics area must grow 5% a year up to 2020, reaching a total of US$ 97 billion late in this period.

With each time higher costs with transportation, it is each time more important that logistics leaders are able to visualize logistics processes in an integrated way and with a high level of traceability – not only for the supply chain, but for the entire process, from the production of an item up to the use of new technologies.

The Complexity Issue

According to the World Bank, in the Logistics Performance Index (LPI), from 13% to 35% of the cargo does not reach the expected quality requirements. This rate ranges according to the country’s positioning in the ranking.

Such data shows that the lack of visibility may generate a series of losses due to the lack of control over the logistics processes. The organizations need data to make the best decision and, for such, they need connected and fast monitoring and tracing systems for almost immediate transactions and clearer processes.

How Logistics 4.0 is Increasing the Visibility

In logistics 4.0, the entire chain is connected: suppliers, customers, customers’ suppliers and so on – all of it to fulfill the need of higher visibility and control of the entire products flow.

One of the technologies that allowed synchronizing even further the logistics processes with systems connected to the business processes was the Internet of Things, which is giving to companies a wider visibility of the supply chain to make better decisions, by increasing the traceability.

In this case, to increase traceability and visibility way beyond the use of GPS applications in fleet operators, logistics 4.0 includes the integration of the data from these devices to internal systems from partners and suppliers to get cargo tracing and global visibility, as well as processes simplification and automation.

The key for such is not only in GPS based clouds, but in the radio frequency technology, providing identity, location and tracing. The data collected by these technologies allow to automatize shipping and delivery processes and monitor important cargo and equipment details, such as temperature control, vibrations standard, among other data.

A pallet, for example, can receive a connected device to collect a series of data that, when associated to other systems’ information can show, for instance, the equipment position with coordinates, as well as adverse weather conditions, traffic data and average speed.

The Internet of Things shall move a total of US $ 8 trillion globally in the next decade – the investments in the supply and logistics chain will respond to US$ 1.9 trillion according to a trends report elaborated by the courier company DHL.

Besides the Internet of Things, technologies such as big data and predictive analysis have been provided to the logistics area more capacity of analyzing the data which are each time stronger, while the number of devices increases.

Thus, the companies will be able to create smarter loading and unloading processes – in scheduled or non-scheduled operations. This will allow optimizing the cargo equipment availability, improving the trucks programming and maximizing its use with the development of smarter routes based on the data sent by the connected devices.

In this scenario, logistics 4.0 helps to minimize processing errors, increase the planning level of loading and unloading processes and automatize a series of flow and documents generation tasks.

Atech counts on a set of Logistics solutions compounded by management tools for the execution and governance of global logistics processes. The objective is automatizing, governing and speeding up, globally and in real time, the corporative logistics. Know our solutions for the logistics area, including Docks and Yard Management, Transportation Management and Track and Trace.


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