AI in Supply Chain Management: Proving the Potential

Logistics Tech Outlook | Monday, November 19, 2018

Artificial Intelligence has had an impact that has already transformed the supply chain to a large extent. AI can increase efficiency in all areas of the supply chain. McKinsey estimated that businesses would gain 1.3 trillion dollars to 2 trillion dollars over a year by using AI in supply chain and manufacturing. Five such companies already took advantage of this forward-focused technology.

Rolls Royce AI to safely transport its cargo: Rolls Royce partnered with Google to create autonomous ships. This technology replaces 20-plus ship crew members instead of replacing one driver in a self-driving car. AI algorithms sense what is around the ship in the water and identify the items that might cause a danger to the ship. In the future, technology will include sensors that can track ship engine performance, load and unload material, and monitor security. Using AI to ships makes shipments faster and safer, as they understand what is around them.

UPS uses AI to create efficient routes for its fleet. In the delivery of products, every minute and mile matters. UPS uses an AI-powered GPS tool named ORION (On-road Integrated Optimization and Navigation) which creates most efficient routes for delivery of products. The data of customers, drivers, and vehicles need to be submitted to the machine, which then uses algorithms to create the easiest routes. ORION helps the drivers make their deliveries on time in an efficient manner minimizing the possibility of them being stuck in traffic. The routes can be changed based on road conditions and traffic issues.

Robots to deliver timely items with AI: Timely items like food and medicine can be delivered by robots instead of using human couriers. Marble, a “last-time logistics company,” delivers all sort of materials faster and more efficient than humans. Robots use LIDAR technology similar to that used in automated cars to avoid choosing the road with a larger crowd.

AI algorithm to forecast when orders arrive and leave a warehouse: Lineage Logistics, a company which keeps food cold for grocery stores and restaurants, uses AI in predicting the path of its orders. This AI algorithm can track when the orders arrive and leave the warehouse.

Combining historical delivery information with customer feedback and weather reports, and logistics: Infinera predicts future delivery times. Companies use a machine-learning algorithm to analyze production times and logistics. AI algorithms then provide the information to the sales associates and customers about the products available and when they can be delivered. AI combines historical with customer feedback, weather reports, and logistics to predict the delivery of products to customers.            

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