The fourth industrial revolution is a vital and fast process that involves all the company sectors. Industry 4.0 can not be separated from a logistics 4.0: innovative and digital methods able to better support the processes, both for the internal handling of goods and for delivery to the customer. We must also consider the way the world of goods mobility is changing, with a continuous increase in international and intercontinental flows. A digital logistics, able to optimize the extension of the supply chain and favor industrial innovation is no longer an option, but a necessity.
The extension of the supply chain is a clear phenomenon: starting from 2009, peak of the economic crisis, and until 2017, the import / export of goods grew by 60% for the countries of the European Union, and also by 110 % for the BRIC countries, with a parallel increase in long-haul traffic.
This continuous extension of the logistics chain has multiplied the players involved: road and rail operators, as well as land and sea transporters, to which are added infrastructure managers, shippers, customs authorities, insurance agencies, brokers and so on, up to the authorities involved in the process. The significant increase of the figures involved, generates an increase in the complexity of the supply chain, whith a growth of data exchange as well as their storage.
It is no coincidence that the first and most important push towards the digitalization of the supply chain must guarantee continuous tracking of shipments, in order to achieve satisfactory goals of efficiency and safety. This is why today industries must necessarily turn to innovative management platforms able of organizing data coming from a variety of different systems.
Increasingly, when it comes to logistics 4.0, we end up referring to blockchain technology, which is perhaps the most suitable solution to ensure efficiency in long-range distribution. In a sector where the many operators involved not only have different degrees of digital maturity, but also different and often irreconcilable platforms, where individual authorities set different standards and constraints, the development of open standards is, on balance, the best among the possible perspectives.
The blockchain technology makes it possible to develop a digital register of transactions and flows, a ledger based on a widespread consensus among the various players involved, so as to trace the products and certify their origin in complete safety.
Apart the extension of the supply chain and blockchain, the logistics sector - such as transport - is called to take an important step towards digitalization, to reduce costs, cut waste and reduce delivery costs.
If you want to deepen the topic, you can read the article on the Zucchetti's Digital Company Magazine.