How Increasing Utilization of Technology Could Impact Transportation Logistics in 2018
As the trucking industry continues to advance technologically, so, too, are the related logistics surrounding transportation management. The Internet of Things, Cloud-based sciences and GPS functions are all a part of the trucking industry’s recent advancement toward a leaner and greener output. The cost-reduction associated with new technological advances allows for increased inertia to utilize them in standard and new operations.
Fleet Management Systems
It became mandatory in 2017 to require most trucks to have an electronic logging device. The use of an ELD, as it is more commonly referred, is to create a more compliant (and safe) working environment for truckers.
The use of telematics is making it more possible than ever before to track vehicle maintenance needs with the click of a few buttons. Now crews have the science available to let them know immediately when diagnostics are due based on miles automatically reported in the system. Preventative maintenance for the truck itself saves the company headache – and dollar signs – in the grand scheme of things.
Telematics also make it possible for geofences to keep the fleet in line with target delivery dates, locations and supply real-time traffic data to truckers. The cost savings here deal directly with company output and time saved on getting to the destination and delivering the goods to the retailer or warehouse. Reports of theft, loss, accidents, and other on the job occurrences can now be reported automatically, too, making fleet management more valuable than ever before.
Inventory Management Gets a Boost
Advanced technology means warehousing is changing dramatically with the invention of connected pallets and smart inventory management. Utilizing the Internet of Things from your smartphone or alternative mobile device is more readily accessible and accepted than ever before.
Tracking goods via the Internet of Things allows for a more precise and accurate, some might even say a more predictable, chain of supply and demand between the driver, dispatcher, shippers, and truckers. Efficiency gains are anticipated with the support of data delivered directly from the route itself, like a node serving as a conduit for transparent communication from start to finish. Delays are reduced – as well as costs.
The Power of Platooning
“Platooning” involves vehicle-to-vehicle communication from a driver support system closely monitoring the fleet to its destination. Trucks are now able to move goods from one spot to the next – sometimes without using human truckers at all. That’s right, platooning is making it possible to use driverless technology to get the job done at a fraction of the time and cost because user error is lower than ever before.
Driving distractions are eliminated because technology does not sleep – if anything, technology gets better over time with continued improvements. The driver shortage currently in effect is corrected and there’s no such thing as fatigue in an automated vehicle.
Although driverless technology is still in its infancy, projects like Tesla’s Semi are already receiving major financial backing from corporations like PepsiCo, for example.
Are autonomous trucks and drones the new “it” thing in trucking? It certainly appears that way.