Logistics

Technological advancement: Importance of evolution of the logistics market in India

Most people across the globe stand misinformed about the logistics market. The majority of the population tends to misinterpret logistics for transportation, not realising that transportation is one of the aspects of logistics, but the industry is much larger than just being constrained to just one vertical. Logistic summarises the entire process from point A to B, involving various operations, including inbound transportation, outbound transportation, fleet management, warehousing, material handling order fulfilment, inventory management and demand planning. The success of this, thus, has turned imperative for the nation as it helps in wholistic completion of operations, keeping the companies and their profits growing, further boosting the economy of the country.

The significance of the evolution of logistics

The logistics sector single-handedly contributes around 14.4% in the Indian economy, which is a significant proportion and is further anticipated to boom at a Compound Annual Growth Rate (CAGR) of 15-20 per cent. Supporting the country monetarily, the domain also helps in making India globally competitive and putting it on a map with other countries. With most of the companies in the country having their manufacturing plants and warehouses away from the city or to far off places and the industrial policies of India, this sector has always had a window to grow. However, due to lack of quality of the transport system, the vertical couldn’t reach its maximum potential in the past few decades; although the aggravating competition in the nation has been changing this narrative too. These further states how the evolution of the logistics industry is significant in order to make India a developed nation!

Obstacles and more

One of the barriers preventing the growth of the sector is the unorganised players making this vertical a fragmented one. Organised players in the industry account for only 10% of the total market. In contrast, around 90% of the warehousing space in the country is controlled by unorganised players who manage small-sized warehouses with less or no mechanisation. In addition to this, one of the factors pulling the country back is the lack of infrastructure and no standard platform for the storage spaces and warehouses to stand connected and in unison. The communication is not seamless, increasing the concerns for the logistics to resolve.

The what and how of the logistical growth

The industry might not have been in the best of its shapes; however, the reform has already been initiated and is in the process as we read this. The government agencies and the private sectors joining hands to offer the best services is one way of this domain, making growth. The internet penetration in the country, backed staunchly by the IT cell of the country has made a difference in the field. Enabling people to communicate better and carry out the smooth operation, the IT domain has empowered the logistics sector over time.

The rise of the e-commerce sector and the growing awareness amongst customers who now seek to check which label provides the best logistics for purchase has further led to the growth of the industry. Ecommerce is also expected to boost exponential growth for logistics in the coming times.

Digitising the sector

  • FastTags

One of the recent developments in the sector of warehousing is the introduction of FastTags. The government began doing R&D on an e-toll collection system and referred to it as FASTag. FASTag will soon become a cashless mode of payment for toll tax and other amenities including fuel. With the implementation of FASTag, the government has managed to save approximately Rs 27,000 crore including the cost of fuel and stoppage time. The process has also led to enhanced shipment tracking (barcodes). Furthermore, it is said that barcodes are the foundation connecting dots between ‘digital’ and ‘physical’. Companies working in barcode technology will be focusing on creating complex hierarchical, tamper-proof, and trackable bar codes. It will solve the case of stolen or tampered bar codes.

  • Machine learning

Machine learning is not only contributing to the growth of the sector but is also creating employment by introducing a whole new range of job opportunities such as goods packaging machine operator, grab unloader, crane operator, vessel operator and others.

  • Logistics automation

The global supply chain is continually furthering and the advances in technology, more specifically automation, prove to save materials and energy as well as enhance the quality and accuracy of the business processes. Moreover, it ensures time and cost-effectiveness, speeding up the growth process.

The role of artificial intelligence has also been pivotal in the technological advancements. Introducing Internet of Things (IoT) and letting the new-day developments take the lead have helped the logistics industry evolve exponentially.

The path ahead

Levelling up the game for the rivals and placing India’s logistic market on a global map, some of the labels are stepping ahead to create unified platforms to provide a standard platform for warehousing while simultaneously improving internal working and communication processes. The competition is getting tougher by the day, helping the evolution to surface and success to take the lead. The road ahead, regardless of the current circumstances and the health crisis seems full of potential for the logistics industry. Metamorphosising the sector for good, logistics is on its way to create history and witness an upward spiral henceforward.

By Alok Bansal, Founder, 13SQFT

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