Throughout the logistics industry, economic pressures, the increasing importance of emerging markets as both manufacturing locations and end markets, as well as the growth of e-commerce, are fundamentally changing the shape and character of logistics networks.
As a result, logistics service providers, and the retailers and manufacturers they support, must reassess not only how to best design their logistics warehousing facilities to meet requirements, but also where to position network locations to meet demand and commercial imperatives.
Warehousing trends to watch
Although the fundamental goals of logistics have not changed, to get the right products into the right place, at the right time and at a competitive cost, logistics is more complex than ever before. The evolution of global networks of interrelated and interdependent systems, processes and actions is behind the shifting landscape on which logistics buildings and networks are built.
Moving beyond legacy systems: Logistics service providers should expect further pressure for productivity, utilisation and other efficiency gains. Most large companies operate many different IT systems and technologies throughout their supply chain, as a result of legacy purchases in different areas. This patchwork approach is currently the norm, particularly given that companies have only recently begun to adopt cloud based systems.
Incorporating consolidated intelligent digital systems: IT systems are well suited for applications within the supply chain, where accurate and reliable data holds the potential to dramatically cut costs. In this mix there is huge potential for the adoption of smart devices although at this point wide usage throughout industry is seen as a security risk.
Warehousing in emerging markets: both warehousing and logistics networks are very much in the process of formalising in emerging markets, some from an extremely low base, whereas they are already highly formalised in developed markets. Key to building capacity in emerging markets will be a firm understanding and acknowledgment of the constraints and challenges particular to the local environment, given that a one-size-fits-all approach will not succeed in these jurisdictions.
The growth of e-commerce: this has prompted a fundamental change in the operations that take place within facilities, driving the need for both operational and cost-efficiency across logistics networks. Internationally, DACHSER warehouses are a core component of integral supply chain solutions and are used above all in the context of DACHSER contract logistics. Warehouses, including the facilities at DACHSER South Africa in Johannesburg, are equipped for various industries and customer-specific requirements.
DACHSER warehousing in the context of contract logistics saves on business costs for our clients as they avoid needless inventory and complex handling that is outside of their core competence. As the logistics partner, we can then effectively use our warehousing capacities to the fullest through flexible consolidation of multiple customers' goods in our multi-user warehouses.
Tailor-made solutions: leading logistics companies are becoming an extension of their clients, by offering a customized warehouse and process design that takes picking techniques and disbursement strategies into consideration that are unique to each customer. For example, DACHSER South Africa often sub-contracts client’s specialists to work onsite in order to ensure that specifications are met at all times. Tailor-made solutions provide real returns for the customer as evidenced in cost and time savings.
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