An earlier blog post covered some of the more significant ways in which logistics professionals are leveraging artificial intelligence to improve the way they do business. Companies are embracing AI in this capacity because it is clearly beneficial. The following points cover the more noteworthy advantages.
In general, business professionals and companies across numerous industries use AI because it significantly boosts their overall efficiency, among other benefits. Consider, for example, the use of AI for inventory forecasting. As an earlier blog entry pointed out, companies are beginning to use AI to determine when they will need to order new inventory for their warehouses. The accuracy of AI can enable them to avoid running out of key items and prevent them from having to order more inventory than is necessary. As a result, this allows organisations to save money and make optimal use of warehouse space.
AI also allows companies to save time on what would otherwise be cumbersome tasks. When employees aren’t responsible for analysing data to track inventory trends and making accurate predictions, they can more easily focus on other key tasks. As a result, organisations that use AI for inventory forecasting operate more efficiently and productively.
It is important that logistics professionals identify the most efficient possible routes when shipping items from one destination to another. As this blog has previously pointed out, AI can help with this process. AI has the ability to quickly analyse numerous factors, including fuel use, distance and traffic patterns, making it much easier to determine the best shipping routes.
That said, it’s worth noting that the best route can change, so if the items were to be shipped by a truck, and a traffic collision were to occur along the route, it could slow the truck down substantially.
Luckily, AI can help to guard against this common type of problem. That’s because more governments are experimenting with the use of AI in road maintenance and emergency response projects. AI-equipped roadways can immediately detect signs of a collision or similar issues and contact emergency services right away. These roadways can also provide drivers (who are using the correct devices) with alerts, re-routing them to their destinations accordingly.
This is clearly beneficial to logistics professionals as if an AI enabled road can alert a truck driver that their current route is no longer usable, they have time to make the necessary changes before becoming delayed. This means items are more likely to consistently reach their destinations on time.
Logistics companies rely on numerous pieces of equipment, ranging from trucks to shipping crates. This equipment needs to be in proper working condition in order to ship items safely and efficiently.
Therefore, it is important that companies identify maintenance needs as soon as possible. For example, if a truck used for shipping needs maintenance but no one is yet aware of this fact, a minor issue could grow into a more serious problem. Until such a truck is repaired, it is unable to be used and this type of downtime can have a negative impact on a company’s income and reputation.
Fortunately, AI helps companies to avoid these types of problems by constantly monitoring the condition of various pieces of equipment. Again, an AI can monitor all relevant factors virtually 24/7, making it arguably more effective than a human when used to identify maintenance needs. As soon as the AI detects an issue that requires attention, it can provide the company with an alert, ensuring that the necessary repairs are made as soon as they are identified.
There is also the issue of employee safety. It’s crucial that organisations ensure that their employees aren’t operating equipment that needs maintenance. If the equipment isn’t in the best possible condition, using it could put employees at risk. This is less likely to be a problem when companies use AI to determine when their equipment needs additional upkeep, limiting damage and employee accidents.
Improves Customer Service
Excellent customer service is essential in the logistics industry. If a customer wants to know the status of a shipment, they need to feel they have their answer within in a short space of time. This is key to maintaining positive relationships with customers.
Fortunately, AI-equipped chatbots are becoming increasingly common. These bots are now sophisticated enough to address many customer service needs. On those occasions when the bot can’t provide the relevant information, it can instead direct a customer to the appropriate department to speak with a human representative.
These are all examples of reasons why many logistics professionals have begun to adopt AI. As its value becomes even more apparent, it’s likely we will see others do the same.