The technologies used at the end of the last century were what led to the start of the concept that has become known as Industry 4.0. The idea was presented for the first time at the Hanover Industrial Technology Fair in 2011, as an industry response to the needs of the new consumer. This new consumer demands products and services that are fully adapted to their needs and desires, and they are not willing to wait very long for those needs to be satisfied. The demand for immediacy is uppermost, along with maximum customisation.
These two elements can only be achieved with digital production and logistics systems that are totally adapted to these new challenges, something we call Logistics 4.0. In this scenario, logistics is not simply moving goods from one place to another, as it is impossible to provide immediacy without understanding the client. The challenge is developing this into a competitive differentiator.
Logistics 4.0 is a necessary complement to Industry 4.0. We well know the importance of the logistics industry, which is why this fourth industrial revolution needs logistics that can adapt to the radical transformation of the production systems posed by industry 4.0. Thus, the same technologies that are revolutionising industry are also being applied to the field of logistics.
Today there are technologies that we must take into account due to their impact on innovation in logistics management that form the basis of Logistics 4.0, such as the extensive use of mobile applications, cloud computing, 3D printers, the Internet of Things (IoT), collaborative logistics, big data, augmented reality or robots (such as autonomous vehicles). A distinguishing feature of these technologies is that they come at a cost that makes them accessible to even small and medium-sized enterprises, unlike with other technological revolutions that have taken place in the past.
The companies that are leading this unfolding revolution understand the needs of this new consumer and focus all their energies on meeting those needs. Amazon is a clear example of this way of doing things. To create immediacy, one key element is understanding the client. Because of this, Amazon creates and perfects algorithms day-by-day, such as “anticipatory shipping”, which is able to predict user demand in order to transport products prepared before purchase that can then be delivered within an hour of the order being placed. The aim is to know what customers want before they even know it themselves. It seems like science fiction, but it is already reality.
In conclusion, we could say that the companies that do not invest in understanding their customers, knowing their tastes, and satisfying them both quickly and efficiently, will certainly struggle to survive. To achieve this, the technology in the processing of data is critical and essential.
feature the coming year
Industry 4.0As a stand-alone concept, it quickly became clear that Industry 4.0 could not survive without developing adaptive logistics that can cope with radical transformations, as well as the algorithms for better understanding the customer.
Logistics 4.0The new logistics go far beyond transport and delivery, and include the extensive use of mobile applications, cloud computing, 3D printers, the Internet of Things, collaborative logistics, big data, augmented reality and robots.
- Catalonia Today 14-01-2018 Pàgina 32