Driving Innovation in Logistics with Robotic Process Automation
Published on : Wednesday 01-04-2020
The use of Robotics Process Automation (RPA) has already proved its ability by automating manual administrative tasks, drafting emails, producing reports in real-time, checking inventory and reordering products, and much more. The technology is set to revolutionize the logistics industry as it has the ability to optimize specific areas of the supply chain and assist companies in gaining a higher return on investment.
RPA is helping logistics in automating a tracking system for shipments and vehicles. It enables checking and reporting shipment status to logistics companies as well as customers through tracking synchronization and mining shipment details. Leveraging this technology automates support tasks across applications and systems, replacing monotonous and tedious clerical tasks acted by humans, with a virtual workforce. Since logistics is still used for military purposes, it is also extensively utilized for generating and delivering commercial products or services nowadays.
In general, logistics refers to the transfer of goods or services to the destination at the right time and in proper condition. The management of logistics consists of devising and properly deploying transportation and warehouse activities to ensure delivery on time. As a complex industry, logistics relies heavily on documentation, and RPA, in this way, makes this process faster with fewer errors. The application of RPA involves invoice processing, credit collections, electronic data interchange, and automatic storing of information in audit trails.
In order to effectively control the overall process, logistics managers must actively track the movement of the goods, right from its picking point to the destination. Also, they need to seek potential merchandisers that enable efficient management of logistics operations. For instance, an American startup Prompp offers a cloud-based system that allows not only inventory control but also wasted capacity monitoring. It enhances the efficiency of warehouse operations including import and export processes.
RPA can incorporate with any existing technology, despite its sophistication or the multiple systems it interfaces, with amalgamating with one another. The technology cannot just be built and deployed rapidly, it also gives a company the access to drive growth while maintaining and strengthening the existing workforce. So, RPA can function as a tool for workforce optimization, instead of workforce replacement.
RPA can also establish an effective interaction between stored data and incoming data from customers. It can automatically record and enter data on customer profiling, payment processing, placing orders and controlling order updates. In logistics, improving customer service is one of the core applications of RPA. It allows customers to monitor the status of their shipments and get notified regarding pick-up timing and possible delays via receiving emails or messages with the order confirmation that generated automatically.
In summary, robotic process automation is a rule-based application aimed at automatically performing pre-programmed tasks. While the technology is able to handle physical, repeatable, and high-volume tasks without human intervention, I believe, it can also carry out several applications in near future while maintaining and enhancing the ability of existing workforce.