The Value of AI in Logistics

Jan 10, 2019International Logistics, Supply Chain Management

Because of revolutionary advances in technology, some have said that our industry is in the midst of a “renaissance.” According to Forbes Insight Research, the supply chain, logistics, and transportation processes are in an “era of profound transformation.” And what is largely driving all of this change? Artificial intelligence, referred to as “AI”, and machine learning, or “ML” for short.

Artificial intelligence is the development of computer system’s ability to perform tasks that normally only humans are able to do, like decision making and translation between languages. Machine learning is a study of algorithms and statistical models that computer systems use to improve performance on a specific task.

AI and ML technologies enable logistics and supply chain leaders to use data feeds to increase optimization and responsiveness across the whole of the supply chain.

This technology is helping the industry in three key ways:

 Real-Time Decision Making

The tasks that logistics teams carry out are wide and complex, but are often repetitive. With the use of AI and ML, those tasks can be turned into data to understand how to make the best, and most efficient, choices for the supply chain.

Forbes reports that workers often require 10 minutes or more to gather information needed to make a decision, while AI can automate the data and narrow selections down to two or three options within a matter of seconds. After AI has decision options ready, industry professionals are able to choose what they think is the best fit for their supply chain.

Predictive Analysis

AI has the ability to predict patterns and report them to management very quickly. For example, using AI within transportation can determine when a vehicle might need preventative maintenance. This would help prevent breakdowns and ultimately ensure that cargo is arriving on time with no hiccups, keeping both you and your clients happy.

Strategic Optimization

AI and ML are data crunchers, which means they are assets to leaders in the supply chain industry. When there are numerous different scenarios that could occur, leaders who use AI and ML are able to understand the impact of different outcomes, which helps improve their decision making both in the short and long term. This could range from strategic choices on a warehouse location to determining truck routes and fleet sizes.

Both AI and ML provide huge value to supply chain professionals through their ability to understand how the supply chain works and to offer real-time analysis and suggestions in order to drive success.


Interested in learning more about how we use technology to impact the bottom line for our clients? Give us a call, we would love to work with you.


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