Logistics and shipping remain at the heart of value chain for any industry. The US Logistics & Transportation Industry spent about $1.33 trillion in 2012 which happened to be about 8.5 % of the country’s GDP.
Out of the total logistic costs, roughly 30% goes into transportation. Now, there are ample opportunities for companies to reduce this cost and bring in higher efficiency. However, with challenges abound, it’s quite complex for companies to bring down transportation costs.
Manual errors in delivery pick-ups, battling traffic congestion, improper freight loading and outdated documentation are some key challenges faced by companies when it comes to transportation.
Investment in technology is an obvious solution to tackle these thorny problems. Logistic companies are already utilizing data & planning software including transportation management systems to boost productivity and cut costs.
But, one technology seems to have an answer to tackle all problems faced by logistic companies.
It’s innovative, it’s smart and it’s clearly the future of logistics especially transportation. Let’s find out how AR is revolutionizing logistics by improving transportation optimization.
A worker wearing a smartglass equipped with an AR application can glance through the load to be carried and find out whether it’s ready for pick-up or not. Right now one requires doing manual counting or scanning a barcode using smartphone/tablet.
Workers can scan markers with smartglass placed on pallets and parcels and check it with a pre-determined value/amount to see if a load is ready for delivery. This can also be used for checking any damages. Scanning markers would require advanced object recognition technology.
Complexity doubles when companies have to transport goods/products overseas. Augmented Reality can be a game-changer here. How? AR applications can be engineered that help workers identify whether a specific shipment has adhered to import/export regulations.
Applications can also help in viewing whether shipment has completed trade documents. By scanning trade documents, changes can be suggested on the spot.
What’s more, trade documents can be translated in real-time once the shipment has crossed borders. For instance, Word Lens App is an excellent example of how this can be done.
This certainly makes international freight handling easier.
Efficient Freight Loading
Currently, printed cargo lists and load instructions are used for managing freight loading. This often makes the entire process highly complex and confusing.
With smartglass and augmented reality applications, workers can get real-time information on where exactly a pallet or parcel has to be loaded.
Also, workers can see loading instructions right in front of their line of sight. This even helps improve worker’s safety.
Traffic congestion is a major challenge faced during transportation. With each passing day, traffic problems are aggravating. This adds to the cost. Augmented Reality applications can offer real-time traffic support and improve driver navigation.
Data can be provided to optimize transport routes. This can happen with the help of a smartglass or information can be displayed right on the wind-shield of trucks. It helps improve drivers’ safety on route by displaying critical data in their field of vision rather than looking at navigation systems and getting distracted.
Applications can also be built that provide information on cargo temperature (Important in transporting specific products).
As a logistics company, if you are looking out for ways to implement technology to trim costs and enhance efficiency, Augmented Reality is the technology to place bets on. You can not only reduce costs but also enhance worker safety and customer satisfaction by delivering products on time. Counter your key business challenges & bottlenecks with this technology and see your profits touching the roof!