Artificial Intelligence (AI) is changing everything we do, and the logistics industry is no different. The major way it helps relates to supply chain management cycles. Let’s talk a little about what AI is, how it works, its predictive impact on supply chain management and some of the benefits it entails.
What is Artificial Intelligence?
Artificial Intelligence, or AI for short, is what “makes it possible for machines to learn from experience, adjust to new inputs and perform human-like tasks.” AI relies on deep learning and natural language processing types of technologies. When using these technologies, computers can complete tasks based on analyzing large amounts of data and finding patterns in the data, which is how an algorithm is created. The beauty of AI is it never stops learning; so long as it processes data and performs tasks, it will continue to learn more and create additional benefits.
What does AI mean for Logistics?
Logistics benefits because of the predictive impact of AI on supply chain management. The machine learning AI does makes it possible to uncover patterns in supply chain data using algorithms that swiftly determine the most significant elements to a supply networks’ success while continuing to learn at the same time. Recognizing these patterns can mean far-reaching benefits for logistics providers. Here are four big benefits of AI:
Benefit #1: Predict Delivery Dates
Using an AI algorithm, companies can predict the path (and speed) of its orders. It can assess when a product will arrive and leave the warehouse. This data also uncovers which products stay in the warehouse longer, and thus, can be placed in storage positions and those products that leave faster can be in the front for easier access.
Benefit #2: Quickly Determine Current Availability of Products
It’s a real sales downer to sell something that’s not in stock. Using AI, sales can have an up-to-the-minute look at the current inventory of products. Even better, AI can also analyze current trends and suggest when to order more product and how much based on those trends.
Benefit #3: Faster Scheduling
This is an add-on to Benefit #2. Armed with the data above, sales can be in a prime spot to negotiate. With all inventory in stock, they can confidently close sales, which are time-dependent.
Benefit #4: Analyze Historical Shipping Times and Manufacturing Details
Do you want to take that up another level? With AI, now sales can go a step beyond with smart supply chain management technology. AI creates the possibility of comparing historical shipping times with manufacturing details and outside data like weather reports. Doing this, you can make sales against predicted inventory, not just planned inventory. This confidence allows businesses to increase profits and efficiencies at the same time.
Not every company is ready to employ AI, but it’s true that the robots are definitely coming and can’t be avoided. This technology is not only exciting but is already demonstrating tremendous ROI. For this reason, be sure to partner with a logistics professional like JIT Services that’s harnessing and applying today’s technology to create stronger, more efficient, more profitable supply chains. Please contact us to learn more.