International express services provider, DHL, recently showcased the key trends that could impact the logistics industry in the next 5 to 10 years. As industry experts in our field and key players in the logistics industry in Africa, we want to shed some light on the four key elements defining the future of logistics according to the DHL 2018/19 Logistics Trend Radar: customer-centricity, sustainability, technology and people.
Delivering on customer demands for a faster and more convenient experience will be key to customer centricity. With more people shopping online, there is an increased need for B2B omni-channel logistics solutions. Consumer demand is also driving growth in direct-to-consumer shipments of time-and-temperature sensitive goods, such as food produce. This will mean new developments and innovations in the supply chain to accommodate for packaging, storage and delivery of goods such as groceries and pharmaceuticals.
As governments, cities and companies commit to cutting down on CO2 emissions and waste, sustainability will become a mandate to operate in the logistics industry. DHL, for example, has committed to becoming emissions-free by 2050. With advancements in logistics fleets and facilities, there is huge potential and pressure for logistics companies to become more environmentally friendly.
This has to be our favourite trend at TSI, and it forms a large part of what we do best. Trends here include advancements and incorporation of blockchain and artificial intelligence into supply chains and logistic services. Systems will also become digitized, allowing for more transparency and accuracy. This will also assist in planning ahead and anticipating disruptions.
Although we can expect to see an increase in robotics and automation, people will continue to remain at the heart of logistics. Technology will be incorporated into the workplace to aid humans with repetitive, physically intensive tasks, enabling people to do more meaningful tasks that require skills such as management and analysis. Digital work concepts will also be necessary to attract and maintain millennial talent in logistics.
Hennie Heymans, CEO DHL Express Sub Saharan Africa, says that digitalization is driving transformation in the logistics sector, making innovation more important than ever before. This is true and we embrace digitalization at TSI, with our system that aims to transform logistics and supply chain management for companies across Africa.