KEY POINTS

  • Asset tracking provides companies with the opportunity to completely overhaul their supply chain and logistics operations by making smarter decisions that can unlock enormous value. DHL and Cisco estimated last year that the potential economic impact of IoT technologies, like asset tracking solutions, in the supply chain and logistics space tops $1.9 trillion.
  • Asset tracking isn't new to the transportation and logistics industry, but legacy options don't stand up well against the many newer sensors and tags on the market. Logistics providers and their enterprise clients have long used tools like barcode scanners to help track and manage inventory. However, next-generation asset tracking solutions that benefit from an internet connection can provide real-time tracking data that is far more valuable.
  • Analyzing asset-tracking data provides companies with several important benefits that can enhance their supply chain and logistics operations. These include cutting down transportation and warehouse costs, optimizing employees' time by taking some of their focus off of inventory-related tasks, and improving compliance reporting. 
  • Because of the breadth of benefits that asset trackers provide, the adoption of these solutions will likely increase across a number of different industries. The retail and manufacturing sectors, in particular, are likely to use these solutions heavily, as they rely on their supply chain operations to deliver high volumes of goods on time. Other sectors that stand to benefit include oil and gas, agriculture, and pharmaceuticals. 
  • Asset tracking solutions provide the most value when the data they provide is aggregated and cross-referenced with other enterprise data sources. However, this sort of implementation represents a major challenge for companies due to a lack of industry standards, as well as the long-standing operational procedures within companies, which struggle to react to real-time data. 
  • Successfully implementing asset tracking solutions will require deploying them as part of a broader technology roadmap. This includes employing data processing and analytics tools that help organizations glean insights from tracking data, and making adjustments to operational procedures to provide greater flexibility and easier integration with technology.

The Impact of Asset Tracking in Logistics

Like many other areas of the economy, logistics is undergoing a digital transformation fueled by the combination of mobile computing, analytics, and cloud services. This combination promises to help companies cut costs and improve delivery times in their supply chain. Industries that lean heavily on logistics are trying to take advantage [...]