Logistics 4.0: keys to understanding the future of the supply chain

Logistics 4.0: keys to understanding the future of the supply chain

Terms such as Blockchain, Big data, the Internet of things, data analytics, artificial intelligence, robotics, and automation have become everyday concepts in logistics. The technological development of the industry, the entire economy, and the population is transforming the supply chain, marking a before and after in every link of transportation and storage.

What is Logistics 4.0? 

The First Industrial Revolution was born from the invention of steam and the beginning of mechanization, the Second Revolution was based on electricity to develop mass production and the Third Revolution was based on technological development to move towards automation. Now, the so-called Fourth Industrial Revolution places digitalization as a new key element to establish a new era marked by the interconnection of information, machines, and processes. 

Industry 4.0 is set to produce better and faster, and Logistics 4.0 must respond to this increase in efficiency to extend all the benefits of digitalization in the supply chain. 

What do we mean when we talk about Logistics 4.0?

Logistics 4.0 is not a technology, nor even a combination of different technologies. It is a new paradigm that large logistics operators have already initiated to reformulate each of their processes. Digital tools become a means to link customers, suppliers, and consumers in an end-to-end interconnected supply chain, with the goal of providing an optimal service that matches the supply of goods to the needs of demand.

Advantages of Logistics 4.0 for shippers:

  1. Transparency: Logistics 4.0 sets up a fully accessible supply chain for the customer, who can track at all times the location of the goods or the conditions in which a particular pallet has been transported.   
  2. Security: Carrier companies have greater control and a much more global view of their entire operation, which allows them to identify potential problems that compromise their security. 
  3. Flexibility: Access to information and data management allows logistics operators to anticipate customer needs, adapt to the rhythms of their production chain, or, for example, avoid bottlenecks in the transportation of goods. 
  4. Competitiveness: A benefit of Logistics 4.0 for shippers is the opportunity it represents to increase their productivity, thanks to a highly reliable logistics service that becomes a competitive advantage for their business.
  5. Sustainability: The optimization of all logistics processes represents a more efficient management of energy consumption and a reduction of the emissions from the transportation of goods.

Why is Rhenus a 4.0 logistics operator?

The commitment to innovation is a strategic axis that defines the Rhenus Group and has characterized a trajectory of more than a century, marked by the desire to anticipate the logistics needs of the future. In this process, Rhenus has continuously introduced numerous initiatives to move globally toward smart logistics: 

  • Efficient data management: The daily work of an international logistics operator like Rhenus represents an incessant volume of information from many sources, which is a strategic element, so we have developed intelligent systems to manage all this data, analyse it and extract conclusions that optimize our logistics services and that we share with our customers to achieve maximum coordination.
  • Full transport traceability: Continuous monitoring of the goods provides the carrier and all the actors involved in the supply chain decisive information to optimize all logistics and industrial processes. This added value also represents a guarantee for the protection of the cargo because it can be completed with new data on the conditions in which the products have been transported, the temperature during the journey, or the light to which they have been exposed, for example.
  • Automation and digitalization of warehousing: Rhenus' warehousing services offer numerous innovative technological solutions. From inventory drones to exoskeletons or geolocation sensors, to autonomous vehicles and fully automated warehouses, fully adapted to the needs of each company and each industrial sector.

Why is Rhenus a reference in logistics digitalization?

The role that the Rhenus Group is playing in Logistics 4.0 is not limited exclusively to the internal development it is carrying out in its own operations and those of its customers. In October 2021, Rhenus, in collaboration with other logistics leaders, launched the Open Logistics Foundation, a non-profit foundation that aims to lay the foundations for the creation of an open-source community in logistics, completely free of charge, with the goal of promoting the digitalization of the supply chain. 

Contact us to take advantage of all the opportunities of the Logistics 4.0