Have you ever thought about how many customers you can earn with WhatsApp Pay? And how many opportunities are available with Open Banking? From facilitating communication to streamlining operations, technologies offer competitive advantages for businesses. Not using them means falling behind the competition.
So, it is necessary to anticipate trends and invest in innovations as soon as possible. An example of this is the use of Artificial Intelligence in logistics. Want to find out how to use it in your company? Be sure to read this article!
What is Artificial Intelligence?
Artificial Intelligence or AI is used to designate software whose algorithms, artificial neural networks, and learning systems are designed to allow computers to replicate, even partially, human intelligence capabilities.
From the interpretation of large volumes of external data, including people’s behavior and contextual events that impact the success of logistics processes, AI can learn, perceive, think, deduce, decide and respond independently.
While computer software is traditionally programmed with linear logic, limiting itself to what is predetermined and only acquiring new functions if it receives new instructions on how to execute them, Artificial Intelligence receives stimuli, analyzes and responds to them in unexpected ways, can evolve on its own.
What is the importance of implementing Artificial Intelligence in logistics?
Artificial Intelligence in logistics is an opportunity to solve several difficulties in the area, eliminating limitations such as lack of personnel or delivery time. The importance of applying this technology to the sector lies in the competitive advantage generated by its benefits, such as:
cost reduction and rationalization
more accurate and agile decision-making;
reduction of waste and failures;
expansion of operational efficiency;
accuracy and predictability.
How to use Artificial Intelligence in logistics?
Logistics involves several areas of a company, which act in the business processes, starting with the receipt of raw materials or ready-made goods until delivery to the final customer, but going through several intermediary processes that reflect the whole’s operational efficiency. In addition to transport, planning and storage are crucial for its optimization. See how Artificial Intelligence can be used in each activity!
Forecasting and planning
But, Studying demand, routing, creating scenarios, and anticipating problems or accidents are planning and forecasting activities that benefit from AI’s predictive models. But, tools that use Artificial Intelligence can correlate several variables that influence the logistics process to predict what can happen.
With this, preventive and corrective actions can be mapped, avoiding risks and reducing costs. So, on the other hand, it also allows the investment to be optimized to obtain the maximum return and ensure the business’s long-term growth.
Automation of operations
In addition to the lack of operational workers being a reality in several countries, the adoption of mandatory safety precautions for professionals in risky activities does not prevent all accidents. But, more than solving these limitations, the automation of logistical tasks makes their execution more accurate, agile, secure, and minimizes the possibility of errors.
Accurately estimating how much, when, and what should arrive at the establishment, preventing production from stopping or customers not finding what they want while minimizing leftovers, is one of the great challenges of inventory management.
AI identifies patterns and deviations through accurate analysis of what is stored and aspects that impact the flow of inputs or outputs. So, in this way, sales forecasting, trends, purchase dates, delivery, and payment terms are planned more efficiently.
In addition to controlling the equipment that moves and organizes items on shelves or through the warehouse, Artificial Intelligence can define the ideal location of each product based on consumption or production forecasts. This makes it possible to map and define a sequence of chained activities, making on-site storage and operation more efficient.
AI favors the safety of the vehicle, driver, and cargo. There are several applications of this technology during transport. So, Fleet location and tracking, route restructuring in the face of unforeseen events, estimation of time until delivery or monitoring of cargo conditions, and predictive maintenance based on sensor information inputs are examples of this.
How does Artificial Intelligence in logistics change the consumer experience?
The use of Artificial Intelligence in logistics has several positive effects on the customer experience. So, through this technology, the supplier can:
inform delivery times accurately, adjusting them in real-time if necessary
get shorter routes;
reduce costs by providing lower prices to the final consumer;
allow up-to-date tracking of orders at any time;
organize contacts with the company, eliminating the need to report the same information in each one;
speed up the resolution of problems and resolve doubts;
offer 24-hour service.
What are the main challenges of using AI in logistics, and how to deal with them?
Using Artificial Intelligence in logistics presents challenges for companies and managers. Enjoying the benefits of this technology depends on being prepared to overcome each one of them. For that, check out the main ones on our list!
Team resistance: technology changes the way employees work, requiring them to adapt. Logistics teams need to be prepared for these changes, receiving information about how it improves their day-to-day;
But lack of technical knowledge of users: the implementation of IT solutions is often limited to users’ knowledge in the area. So that this does not make the Artificial Intelligence project in logistics unfeasible, it is essential to offer specific technical training programs for those involved;
So, technology under development: despite being advanced, AI is constantly improving, creating difficulties during use. A supportive and constantly evolving technology team is the best way to handle this type of situation;
lack of planning: companies that do not have the habit of planning their activities in their routine find it difficult to implement and use AI solutions. So, a mindset shift is necessary to ensure the tool’s success.