Digitisation is now everywhere and is spreading like wildfire.
I am therefore writing a series of articles on the subject of digitalisation. My motivation is that digitalization means something different for every industry and type of company and I want to work out these differences. For an illustration of the differences in different industries, see the following figure.

In this section, I would like to discuss the very essence of this article and illustrate the digitalization in the logistics industry.

Characteristics of the industry

For a long time, the main task of logistics was the storage, transport and handling of goods. However, globalisation has changed the industry. Their range of services now also includes monitoring and control, i.e. the management of entire supply chains. At the same time, this change also led to demands for more flexible and automated processes, which is why the logistics industry invests early in agile methods and digitalization in the form of various technologies, such as tracking systems or fully automated inventory monitoring. But cloud computing and big data have also become increasingly important for the logistics industry.

The current digitalization in the logistics industry

While the handling and transport of goods in the logistics industry operated behind closed doors for many years, digitalization has thus long since reached the area of logistics. Everything is already in the sign of Logistics 4.0. This will make use of technological tools to promote the networking of product, man, machine and their data. Tracking systems for parcels or goods deliveries, fully automated processes, such as online and real-time-based inventory monitoring have long been part of everyday life in the logistics industry. This step of a digital transformation has already led to greater transparency in logistics processes between suppliers and their shipping chains. But also in the field of intralogistics, the trend is already towards full autonomy of the goods, so that they can soon organise and control their transport themselves thanks to intelligent systems.

In the future, therefore, the co-design of digitalization and the advancement of agility through cross-process and cross-company coordination in the transport and utilities sector will play an important role.

Benefits of digitalization in the logistics industry

In the logistics industry, it is hoped that the increased introduction of digitalization will make processes even more automated. But also an acceleration in the area of resource use and material flow. This should lead to even more flexibility of business models, processes and cross-company cooperations and relationships. At the same time, this also alludes to the main objective of Logistics 4.0. Through the application of agile methods and technological systems, this promises optimized networking, the decentralization of entire systems and an even greater service orientation based on real-time analyses. For example, in the future, a purely web-based processing of orders is planned, as planned using digital bills of lading.

Tip:

If you are as enthusiastic about this topic as I am, then you can find the entire series of articles here!

Genderhinweis: Ich habe zur leichteren Lesbarkeit die männliche Form verwendet. Sofern keine explizite Unterscheidung getroffen wird, sind daher stets sowohl Frauen, Diverse als auch Männer sowie Menschen jeder Herkunft und Nation gemeint. Lesen Sie mehr dazu.

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I blog about the impact of digitalization on our working environment. For this purpose, I present content from science in a practical way and show helpful tips from my everyday work. I am a manager in an SME myself and I wrote my doctoral thesis at the University of Erlangen-Nuremberg at the chair of IT Management.

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