Logistics and the Internet of Things (IoT)

October 30, 2014

Is your enterprise connected? The Internet of things suggests that integration of devices and functions are going to be the way of the future for future logistics. In fact market researcher Gartner predicted 26 billion devices will be part of the Internet of Things by 2020, a 30-fold increase from 2009.

So how do you prepare for this shift toward even greater interconnectivity? First and foremost try adopting the philosophy that the Internet of Things is based on. To find out more about this concept we went rummaging through the net and pieced together some pertinent points.  Enjoy!

What Is the IoT?

Well this shift toward IoT has actually been happening before your very eyes for quite some time now.

Infographic thanks to www.SurveyAnalytics.com

The Internet of Things and Logistics

In fact, most likely you are already, to some extent, involved in it. Do you use electronic technologies to improve and connect certain processes within your operation? IoT takes this to the next level by intelligently connecting people, processes, data, and things via devices and sensors. Then using these connections to make smarter, more effective and near instantaneous decisions.

What Are the Benefits of IoT?

How long have you got? Connecting infrastructure that we already have established and using it to bring a deeper understanding to our processes just makes perfect sense. It gives us incredible power all in the palm of your hand. Obstacles that generally impact logistics like distance, weather and/or demand will become less and less of an issue in future years.  With IoT you will be able to overcome these in real-time.

Why Is a Logistics System a Good First Step?

A system like the 4SIGHT Logistics Solution is a great way to introduce your operation to the Internet of things. The 4SIGHT platform has been designed with several goals in mind, the system is modular, so you install only the portions you need. It’s a responsive web design that supports multiple devices so you can perform necessary functions from a desktop, from a tablet in a truck, or from a smartphone.  The clever use of these technologies is exactly what supports IoT. The platform works with a variety of technologies at all levels to ensure smooth integration with your company’s existing systems. Again, this ease of functionality and ability to integrate is a strong suit of IoT.

Devices, Devices, Everywhere.

4SIGHT uses a variety of sensors, RFID and GPS technology. These technologies and devices provide an overall picture and detailed information of everything going on in your yard — from trailer positions and contents to yard truck locations — right at your fingertips. As far as IoT is concerned, the smarter your devices and technologies the smarter the business. In the spirit of connecting functions, 4SIGHT has a list of success stories from reducing labor hours thanks to RFID sensors to time reduced on maintenance thanks to automatic stress-test based notifications; meaning equipment is only ‘repaired’ when it reaches a certain threshold as opposed to the more common calendar based system.

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Most users see an ROI with 4SIGHT within 12-16 months. However, some users have seen an ROI as quickly as 6-9 months.