This year, artificial intelligence (AI) remains one of the top advancements in supply chains and an integral solution toward improving efficiency.
Artificial intelligence generated major buzz as a revolutionary technology for supply chains in 2018. Early last year, Morai Logistics discussed how AI improved transparency with customers, in addition to optimizing transport management systems. In fact, the success of the market in 2018 generated ‘USD 730.6 billion’.
The latest forecast on Artificial Intelligence in supply chain indicates that by 2025 this figure is ‘expected to reach ‘USD 10,110.2 million’. This increase is based on a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 45.55%.
These findings indicate a significant global investment into AI technology, in addition to a lucrative future from integrating AI into supply chains. In addition, research on AI adoption found that,
By 2023, at least 50% of large global companies will be using AI, advanced analytics and IoT in supply chain operations.
Gartner, a leading global research and advisory firm, believes that over the next four years, the presence of AI in warehouses will also increase. In fact, by 2023 collaborative robotics will supplement ‘over 30% of operational warehouse workers’.
The goal of integrating AI into supply chains is to support high demand with greater visibility and efficiency. Experts also link the integration of AI enhanced technologies, such as the Internet of Things (IoT), with ‘revenue increase or cost savings’. Let’s take a deeper look at the top ways this technology will impact the industry this year.
Robotics & Machine Learning
Robotics will play a significant role in improving warehouse performance. There has been skepticism in the past that advanced robotics will replace human labour, however, this is not the case. On the contrary, robots and workers will work in a collaborative working environment.
Research indicates that these ‘intelligent and aware’ machines are best suited for ‘complex motor control’. Furthermore, to enable workers to focus on their strengths and core responsibilities, robotics can independently help move goods around.
The connection between AI and efficiency is also shown through the use of data automation. Experts on the integration of AI into supply chains believe that by implementing this technology into equipment, a company will save. According to SupplyChain247,
Artificial intelligence collects information from sensors on equipment, which combines with maintenance records.
This efficient, streamlined process will ensure transparency on maintenance and improved productivity is achieved. For instance, extended research found that integrating AI could improve ‘productivity by 20% and cut maintenance costs by 10%’.
The advanced learning of AI also provides the added benefit of improving efficiencies throughout the shipment life cycle. This includes Omni-channel modes of transport such as tracks, rail, ocean and air. In the fall of 2018, Forbes spoke to the integration of ORION, an ‘AI-powered GPS tool’ that UPS had adopted. This technology removed barriers caused by traffic and back-tracking, by collecting and transmitting data by customers, drivers and vehicles. The insight generated from this data would be utilized to pin point ‘the most optimal routes’. This is a great example of how AI can contribute to improving efficiencies while also improving cost-savings across the organization.
Based on the above findings, Artificial Intelligence (AI) will equip supply chains with the support and optimized solutions they require to improve efficiencies. From warehouse and robotics, to improving maintenance consistency and delivery optimization, AI will continue to drive the market forward.