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Key Logistics Trends in 2024: What Your Company Needs to Know

While the logistics industry is always changing, the last few years have been particularly tumultuous. Logistics trends for this coming year are highly dependent on changes coming from the implementation of new technology solutions. The addition of transparency and traceability into the supply chain is vital to enable shippers to remain flexible in their approach. As we enter a new year, here are six trends that are emerging for 2024.

Big Data

The use of data has been talked about in shipping for a long time and now most shippers are realizing that they have to use it in order to move forward. Software systems and tools have given logistics companies the ability to use real-time and historical data to make better and more informed decisions about their business. Companies also gain visibility into the supplier side of the business so they can assess risks and inventory levels through logistics software. This assists in forecasting, reduces the chance for a cybersecurity attack, and streamlines operations in shipping and warehouses.

Digitalization

Digitalization is one of the biggest trends this coming year. Artificial intelligence (AI) and blockchain technology are being used to automate the shipping world. The pace of AI adoption in the supply chain is growing, with an increasing number of supply chain executives believing that AI will have a big impact on logistics.

New developments in these technologies will continue to improve real-time tracking and supply chain visibility. Another development in digitalization is paperless shipping meaning that all information and pertinent documentation is done digitally. Large maritime shippers such as Maersk, MSC, and Hapag-Lloyd have moved toward the use of data and digitalization to improve their operations.

Sustainability

The logistics and transportation industries continue to make strides toward greener solutions. With ports experiencing low water levels all over the world, operations have been suspended periodically over the last year due to the climate. This draws attention to the need for a greener industry. Regulations implemented by global shipping organizations such as the International Maritime Organization’s IMO 2020 are mandating clear fuel and emissions for vessels in the future. New ships are being built to be able to run off of alternative fuel sources. This year, expect that stricter standards will be announced throughout the industry.

Sustainable packaging is another key trend. Biodegradable, recyclable, and reduced packaging materials cut waste and positively impact the environment. Technological advances such as digital watermarking and smart packaging reduce spoilage rates. Logistics companies are reviewing ways to make less of an environmental footprint with every shipment as consumers become more aware of how the brands they purchase from view sustainability.

Last-Mile Delivery

That final mile has always been a challenge for e-retailers and continues to evolve based on consumer demands. U.S. retailers have built their businesses around being able to deliver faster and better. Retailers like Walmart, Target, and Home Depot have all expanded their last-mile delivery options, some taking shipping services back themselves to be able to deliver quicker. Technological advances will continue to be explored as less expensive options for making on-time deliveries. E-commerce growth is demanding faster, flexible, trackable, and sustainable last-mile solutions.

Automation and Robotics

Logistics has been changed forever by automation and robotics and that trend will continue to grow this year. One of the biggest impacts has been in warehouses. Intelligent automation makes warehousing easier with automated storage and retrieval systems. Robotics is able to streamline manual tasks like scheduling, tracking, auditing, and reporting. This has cut down on manual time and money spent doing everyday tasks. Robotics will also continue to be tested in delivery methods through drones and self-driving vehicles.

Cybersecurity

Cybersecurity is becoming more important than ever in the shipping industry, as digitalization grows. Since the industry is highly depending on global suppliers and digital platforms, it has become more vulnerable to cyber attacks and data breaches. Tools such as cybersecurity training, access management, blockchain, and encryption help to secure systems and the supply chain network.

The private sector has started to invest in cybersecurity as more sensitive data is stored on the cloud. The industry will move towards cybersecurity options to protect sensitive data and prevent theft and cyberattacks. Multifactor authentication will become the norm in shipping and logistics as companies try to mitigate the risk of a global economy.

How Verizeal Can Help Your Business in 2024

This year will be a year of investment and focus on areas that will elevate the industry. While technology will provide efficiency, sustainability and better customer satisfaction, it takes navigation and a partner that can work with your business to build a resilient supply chain and shipping operation. Verizeal is the obvious choice to help grow your business with a logistics platform that makes doing business that much more efficient.

 

 

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