It seems that everywhere in the news these days are businesses who are using ‘the cloud’ or storing their information ‘on the cloud’ and it seems that the logistics industry is keeping pace with this cloud-based change. According to industry experts, using the cloud revolution could be the final piece for many companies who use third party logistics companies to complete their chain.
Speed of process for logistics services
The biggest advantage with cloud-based technology is the speed of process involved – it allows real time access to incredibly large amounts of information and where both user and information are is immaterial. This accessibility and speed is behind many companies turning to cloud-based tech to solve a variety of problems.
Most companies now acknowledge that by outsourcing their key logistics services, including warehouse storage and fulfilment services, this not only saves money but also time. It also allows for a more flexible approach in the future. But the biggest problem currently experienced in the system comes when answering customer questions about the status of their order.
When this happens, typically a customer service agent will contact the warehouse to find out the information, which can take from minutes to hours or even days to uncover. The more time passes, the more frustrated the customer becomes. With the Internet, things have become easier but by integrating a cloud-based system into the process, the benefits for customer and retailer are clear.
Accurate tracking for supply chain management
Customers in particular are now adapted to slick e-commerce platforms that offer the highest level of service and expect this to continue after the order has been placed. A cloud system allows the data to be shared real time between all the parties involved so at any stage in the process customer or retailer can check where the order it. So the operator at the warehouse can view the same data as the customer service agents and the customers themselves allowing live reporting, order status updates and even tracking information to be instantly available.
The other big advantage with using the cloud is that the retailer isn’t burdened with a massive and complex web server along with the necessary means to back up all the information and the security worry of someone physically breaking in. Everything is stored on the cloud in physical location and can be access by any means from the computer to tablets and even smartphones in some cases.
Of course, like everything on the internet, there is room for improvement and new areas to be developed. One new development currently being tested emails a tracking page to the customer the moment they place an order that shows them the journey their delivery will take from warehouse to their door. It will include the batch number of freshness dating information and even the personal details of the person who collected and packaged the item. All cloud systems make use of the best modern encryption techniques so the highest levels of security is guaranteed.
So for the business seeking to give their customers the best and speediest service possible, the answer may very well be ‘in the cloud’.