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Pushkar Singh

The author is CEO & Co-founder, LetsTransport

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Post-pandemic Smart Routing To leading Economies of scale in Logistics

Smart routing, fast-tracks and strengthens the ROI of a logistics company as it shifts from implementation to integration and eventually optimization.

The logistics sector has come to the forefront suddenly since the onset of the pandemic. India and Indian businesses too have taken notice of this new development. The pandemic highlighted the varied opportunities and challenges for logistics but it also suggested that technology is the differentiator for its efficient working. 

This sector earlier faced a cavalier attitude from CXOs of large businesses and was given lesser importance, but people are now getting to know the importance of logistics, which has become the key differentiator for everyone as lack of adequate resources is directly leading to losing market share to competition in the current times.

Logistic-tech companies like us offer paperless and minimal contact operators and aid businesses to better their deliveries and organize them in the most effective manner.  Digital sensors and the Internet of Things have the potential of changing the narrative of logistics management in the country. The other crucial aspect is smart routing or optimization of routes in a smart matter using data insights that result in reducing stop sequences. 

While the world is moving towards new technologies in smart routing including Real-Time Traffic Consideration, Order Vehicle Constraints, Geocoding, Historical Data Inspection, Rider Preference, Dynamic Route Planning and Analytics and Report Management but the ground picture is far-away from our expectations. The route planning in many places is still being done by hub/warehouse in-charge or the truckers themselves. The market is far from implementation of AI and other such sophisticated practices at this point of time.

While logistics companies enable smart routing tools on their platform, the current challenge faced by truckers in terms of using it is that they work with multiple vendors at the same point of time, and as a result, they see smart routing platform only for trucks as a hassle because it consumes time in switching from one platform to other. Various companies have now come-up with cross platform routing tools eventually providing truckers with the option to use for all their consignments. These cross-platform tools need a wider industry push and efforts are made towards the same. The technology will help in reducing redundant and duplicate tasks by truck drivers thus resulting in maximum output and efficiency with less effort.

A cost-effective open source routing engine ensures faster deliveries for clients as it computes the shortest, fastest path between points with no manual planning, whatsoever. Moreover, route optimization in logistics considers the real-time events such as the state of traffic, accessibility of equipment and labour for loading/unloading etc. Be it any type of eventuality that arises in the process of transportation, route optimization can quickly respond to it.

Smart routing, thus, fast-tracks and strengthens the ROI of a logistics company as it shifts from implementation to integration and eventually optimization. With this in practice, the logistics managers can assimilate all the necessary metrics connected with a transportation process in one window, console, to see how performance evolves in real-time or as a record. 

The four main pluses that logistics players get from smart routing are:

  • Instant access to all the truckers, carriers in real-time
  • Capability to tailor service as per the demand of new customers, suppliers, and carriers
  • Data streaming across the network, allowing users to have access to accurate and robust information
  • Ability to manage better, at a very less cost 

The logistics sector has emerged as a key enabler for e-tailers, businesses who want to deliver a delightful experience to their customers. The role that the sector has played during the pandemic, especially for delivering essential goods has highlighted how the intermingling of tech can boost the sector further. People are now opting for full-stack solutions in logistics rather than just SaaS-based services, as they are preferring to outsource required services rather than having a full-time resource to manage the platform.

Sure, logistics SaaS has gained quite a momentum in recent times but the future lies in full-stack offerings and will see a lot of reception as companies will be outsourcing service offerings in non-speciality areas. Businesses will prefer associating with logistic tech players using IoT, intuitive tracking and state-of-the-art solutions, powered by innovative technology stack, especially smart routing as an advanced feature. 

Disclaimer: The views expressed in the article above are those of the authors' and do not necessarily represent or reflect the views of this publishing house

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