The logistics sector is changing. Logistics providers are seeking to maximise efficiencies against a backdrop of increasing demand. Developing an innovative logistics sector is the key way to bring fresh thinking to the supply chain. Through its Open Innovation Labs, L Marks seeks to develop agile, flexible logistics solutions that respond to the needs of the supply chain for the future.
Why innovate in the logistics sector?
The last few years have seen major shifts in the logistics sector. The global pandemic, a rise in ecommerce, BREXIT, a rise in gas and fuel prices and a labour skills shortage has meant that we are entering a transformative decade for the sector. Digital services and innovation are now at the forefront of solutions to improve visibility and productivity, to ease the strain caused by all these mounting pressures. The added pressure from consumers and government legislation to address environmental issues are also playing a role in increasing the levels of innovation that are required in the logistics sector.
What are the key trends we are seeing in the logistics sector?
The key innovation trends we have identified which are set to shape the logistics sector over the next 5 years are:
- Big data and advanced analytics – Use of smart analytics techniques to diagnose operational issues, optimise network and transport planning and support a greater utilisation of resources
- AI – Utilised to help solve very complex operational challenges such as dynamic route optimization and physical automation to create a warehouse of the future
- Robotics and automation – Key areas are autonomous driving and new flexible picking and manipulation systems, essential for the ever-growing e-fulfilment sector
- The Internet of things (IoT) – Bringing better visibility to supply chains increasing transparency and service quality
- Sustainability – There is increased pressure to decarbonise the supply chain. This can be done in a number of ways including, sustainable packaging, waste minimisation and choosing optimal journeys to reduce carbon emissions
- 3D printing – The future of 3d printing will allow manufacturers to easily produce parts to order. This allows manufacturers to reduce overheads and shorten the length of the supply chain
Why partner with L Marks for innovation programmes for the logistics and supply chain INDUSTRY?
L Marks has been running innovation programmes for the logistics sector for a number of years and has seen exciting innovation products being tested and launched with our corporate partners. We understand greatly the logistics and supply chain sector. We see innovation being the key way to ensure logistics companies remain relevant and respond to the needs of the supply chain for the future.
Some of the exciting innovation successes L Marks have supported through their Open Innovation programmes include:
- The creation of oneVASTwarehouse. An online platform which matches buyers and sellers of warehouse space, allowing companies that need on-demand access to storage to find it quickly, and warehouse owners the opportunity to advertise underutilised space to generate a new income stream.
- Decreasing the risk of musculoskeletal injury by 27% at a warehouse operation and 40% at a container offloading operation through a trial between Soter Analytics and Wincanton on the W² Labs 2019 programme. SoterCoach, the smallest wearable device and training program, uses AI to coach workers to self-correct their movements in real-time to avoid ergonomic injuries.
- Redefining warehouse management through AI-powered decision automation. Partnering with CognitOps, Wincanton tested how the new software could give operations managers visibility over an entire ScrewFix facility. Having resource visibility and recommendations for resource redeployment helped to test how to increase pick performance and site flow. W² Labs 2019