Queensland and Northern Territory Transport Blog
Posted on 11 January, 2018 in Logistics, Supply Chain

How Technology Drives Supply Chains and Logistics

How Technology Drives Supply Chains and Logistics

It’s getting harder to predict how supply chains and logistics will change in response to technology. Innovations from a few years ago that were expected to revolutionise everything have yet to make an impact, whilst other changes that have occurred were a complete surprise. However, it’s hard to argue against the impact technology is having on supply chains and logistics.

The Rise of Carbon Consciousness

Technology is making it easier for businesses to run more efficiently. This is true economically, as well as environmentally. It’s unlikely there’s anyone working in an Australian business or industry who hasn’t heard the words ‘carbon footprint’ thrown around. There has been a massive drive for businesses and industries to reduce and even eliminate their carbon footprint. 

What It Means to Go Carbon Neutral

Going carbon neutral means a company works to reduce their greenhouse gas emissions wherever they can and uses offsets to account for the rest. This might mean taking part in a tree planting scheme or paying a carbon offset company to organise offset for you.

What You Can Do to Cut Carbon

A big culprit when it comes to greenhouse gas emissions is cars and trucks on the roads. This means that whenever you transport goods or equipment, you are contributing to greenhouse gas emissions. Fortunately, there are a few different things you can do to reduce your carbon footprint here. You can also choose a transport company that is carbon neutral, so that you don't have to worry about your carbon footprint at all. 

Consider Interstate Consolidation

If you regularly ship smaller consignments of good, that is, items that are big enough to need shipping but won’t fill a whole truck, you might want to consider interstate consolidation. This means that your goods are shipped from one location to another with someone else’s goods that are also being transported to the same location. Fuller trucks mean fewer trips, resulting in lower carbon emissions. 

The Rise of Road Over Rail

Road freight technology is becoming more and more advanced. Road trains can carry more goods and equipment than ever before and are now capable of transporting much larger and heavier equipment than previously. Rail freight, on the other hand, is slow and unreliable by comparison. It is also able to service fewer locations and doesn’t provide the same flexibility that road freight can offer. While road freight technology forges ahead, rail is being left in the dust.

Road Freight Means More Options

The rise in road freight options means there are now more locations companies can ship to nowadays. Instead of being limited to major cities or towns the rail runs through, companies can transport freight to any location that has roads in and out of it. Road freight also offers a lower cost and increased frequency of shipping, which is always great news for companies.

Autonomous Road Transportation

This technology is a bit more futuristic than other innovations currently driving supply chains and logistics. However, it is growing more viable as an everyday transport solution every year. Automated trucks are already operating in Western Australia’s mining industry. In fact, most industry experts predict that is won’t be long before the mining industries in the Northern Territory uses them, as well.

The Impact of Autonomous Trucks

Autonomous trucks will mean reduced costs as transport companies will no longer have to pay drivers’ wages. It will also mean that goods and equipment arrive faster, and with no need for breaks, autonomous trucks can drive through day and night.

These technological innovations are exciting news for big companies and industries, although there are things you need to be wary of, too. The rise in carbon consciousness means that companies who are not currently working to reduce their carbon footprint could be hit hard with increased energy costs or a reintroduction of the carbon tax. However, most of the technological advances are leading to decreased costs and increased flexibility for supply chain and logistics. 

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