Connectivity is at the forefront of logistics and supply chain technologies, driving better integration across networks.
Sensors, software and platforms designed for supply chains utilize data gleaned from Internet of Things (IoT) and artificial intelligence (AI) technologies to enable your business to communicate faster and more efficiently with customers, eliminate unnecessary links, and reduce expenditures and errors.
LSCT has the breadth and capacity to have impacts across nearly all economic sectors. Broadly, LSCT can be defined as advanced tools, processes, software, data, machinery and equipment used to analyze, predict, track, schedule, and implement the flow and storage of goods and services throughout the distribution system in a manner that enables integration, accountability, transparency and efficiency.
New and emerging LSCT in Canada
In a report completed for Global Affairs Canada, Global Advantage Consulting Group has identified leading and emerging technologies in logistics and supply chains developed by Canadian firms.
- Artificial intelligence (AI): Algorithms that analyze data from different sources and generate insights for decision-making, while continuously learning and adapting to different circumstances.
- Connected and Autonomous Vehicles: Vehicles that can operate without a human driver, by using environmental sensors that provide a view of the vehicle’s surroundings. Autonomous vehicles can sense their environment, keep track of their location, determine next steps based on sensor data, and act without the need for human intervention.
- Big Data Analytics: Examining large data sets from various sources to identify patterns, trends and correlations that will help companies make better-informed decisions.
- Blockchain: A digital ledger that stores asset transaction data, which cannot be changed or deleted. Blockchain records all transactions that occur in a supply chain network, which eliminates individual, paper-based ledgers and provides a consistent view of data to collaborating organizations. Blockchain is a type of distributed ledger technology because it operates on a distributed network, i.e. data is stored in distributed locations, rather than a traditional centralized network. There is no one owner of the information, and all members have the same information.
- Cloud: Using remote internet servers in a network architecture to store and process data, as opposed to a local server or computer.
- Drones (unmanned aerial vehicles): Drones are self-piloting autonomous aircraft that navigate themselves to a predetermined destination through sensors and cameras.
- Enterprise software: Software that is used by organizations, as opposed to individuals, to manage different aspects of business operations.
- Internet of Things (IoT): Devices that are connected through the internet, which allows for machine-to-machine communication. For example, IoT sensors in equipment automatically communicate data, which is moved through the cloud.
- Robotics: Machines controlled by computers that automatically carry out tasks previously done by humans.
Unlocking digital to impact supply chains
Logistics and supply chain management executives understand the impacts of advanced technology on the sector, but its adoption and usage are still in early stages, or have yet to get full internal buy-in. Supply chain executives find it difficult to identify technological solutions to meet their current and future business needs. Enterprises who are slow to digitize their processes face danger of being left behind by more resource-rich firms that have the capacity for innovation in their processes.
Firms with more developed digital infrastructure have fared better during the pandemic than those without. Canadian LSC firms, lagging behind in digitalization, could utilize LSCT as tools to plan for future disruptive scenarios, mitigate the impacts of the pandemic on their business and integrate elements of their end-to-end supply chain.
How Global Advantage can help you
Global Advantage Consulting Group offers a variety of services customized to your organization’s needs. To see more about how our products can help shape your organization’s understanding of Canada’s research & development and innovation ecosystem, visit our portfolio of work here.