A global survey conducted recently reveals that nearly 82% of shipping companies and logistic companies have access to state-of-the-art digitalization techniques and process automation or are about to implement them soon.
This is primarily because evolving smart technologies with some incredible potential, are not only big game changers in global shipping but in courier services as well.
This again is an inextricable part of international logistics operations. The following are the 5 smart technologies (certainly not created by Alan Harper from Two in a Half Men or Napoleon Dynamite) used by shipping companies, including operations pertaining to shipping in Canada.
1. Use of Blockchain Technology by Shipping Companies
Global shipping is taking a serious look at the applicability of blockchain technology, a decentralized system that ensures data-authenticity and consensus.
It is expected that blockchain will revolutionize the shipping industry and operations of logistics companies in future, particularly in trading. Shipping giant Maersk for example, tracks cargo through its blockchain-based platform to eliminate label tampering and enhance shipping time.
2. Augmented Reality
Even though it’s in its nascent stages, Augmented Reality (AR) connects employees of most shipping companies and logistics companies spread over multiple global locations, helps to train them and enhances product repair efficiency. This is highly applicable to the shipping industry for pinpointing repairs, executing ship inspections, and conducting meetings virtually.
3. The Autonomous Ship
This is a joint venture between Rolls Royce and Google Cloud to develop an intelligent awareness software and is being used by shipping companies already.
This is expected to play a crucial role in developing the future concept of the “autonomous vessel” by 2020 (this has nothing to do with Megatron in those outstanding Transformers movies). In fact, Norway already has the world’s first autonomous shipping system and other countries are expected to follow suit soon.
4. Cloud Technology Applicability in Shipping & Logistics Companies
Cloud technology too, is significantly impacting the operations of shipping companies and logistics companies the world over. It enables easier access to data 24×7 regardless of location and reduces data silo volumes also.
Additionally, cloud technology makes system and process integration much easier for companies. One of its core benefits has been vastly improving communications between on land and off shore staff. So whether its crew planning, payroll execution or performance appraisal of seamen, up-to-date digital data is always available as and when required.
Cloud-based technology has also considerably simplified processes like stock planning and purchasing as also in regulation compliance and its monitoring.
5. Smart Speakers
Smart speakers that are expected to invade at least 70 million households in the US by 2022, thanks to Google Home, Amazon Echo and Sonos will also be used by shipping companies and logistics companies in their daily operations in the foreseeable future. As this technology advances, these voice-controlled devices will certainly make information access easier and quicker or to simply add or edit data by way of voice commands.
Thus, it’s evident that technology is certainly helping both shipping companies and logistics companies to tackle management challenges and improve efficiencies. From fleet and crew management to automating processes, technology is enhancing their business performance, cutting costs, and improving operational efficiencies.