Technology is revolutionizing India’s logistics sector amid COVID-19: Report
India’s logistics firms are using technology & digitalisation to boost efficiency of their services
Amid India’s ongoing efforts to contain the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic, the logistics sector has been working on the frontline to ensure continuity of supply of essential goods across the country. With the need for upgrading the supply chain infrastructure, the COVID-19 pandemic amplified the significance of the Shipping and Logistics (S&L) sector as an essential service.
In order to address the new challenges posed by the pandemic crisis, a number of logistics firms have revamped their business strategies through technological advancements and digitalization. Technological innovations such as unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs) like drones, digitalization of warehouses and use of blockchain, artificial intelligence (AI), Internet of Things (IoT) have transformed the country’s logistics ecosystem.
A number of players in the Indian logistics industry have collaborated with state governments, NITI Aayog and other institutions to streamline the delivery of essential medical supplies and COVID-19 vaccines among other critical goods to various parts of the country. Blue Dart is one such logistics firm that is using drones and other advanced technologies to ensure the delivery of medical supplies and vaccines to remote areas of the country through its ‘Blue Dart Med-Express Consortium’.
Reportedly, Blue Dart is working with the pharmaceuticals and medical equipment firms to ensure technology-led delivery of crucial medical supplies such as testing kits, vaccines, ventilators with the aim of maintaining the continuity of the supply chain.
”Using drones could make delivery of critical medicines, vaccines especially to remote areas, more accessible and faster,” said Wing Commander S. Vijay, chief operating officer at Skye Air Mobility, as quoted by a media report.
Logistics firms are using technology-backed systems to facilitate real-time upload of all data related to pickup and delivery of medical goods and equipment. For instance, Bengaluru-based Spoton Logistics is making efficient use of technology to transport FDA-approved oxygen concentrators to more than 35 locations across the country by providing real-time visibility about the delivery process to consumers to ensure optimum transparency.
Technology-driven strategies and digitised operations have helped in minimising manual errors and maximising productivity across the shipping and logistics industry. It has also helped businesses in reinventing their models in accordance with the shifts in supply chain due to COVID-19.
According to a recent report, India’s $215 billion logistics sector is one of the largest in the world and is continuously growing at a CAGR (Compound Annual Growth Rate) of 10.5 percent.
With time, technological advancements will allow economies to tap the capabilities in e-commerce with the aim of boosting trade. Strengthened trade potentials along with reduced manual costs will enhance the demand for global shipping and logistics services; thereby facilitate rapid post-pandemic recovery and economic growth.