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Digitisation critical if retail supply chain is to meet customer experience demands - Wincanton

Digitisation critical if retail supply chain is to meet customer experience demands - Wincanton

Wincanton, the largest British logistics company, has today launched a roadmap for businesses looking to transform their customer experience through digitisation of the supply chain. The rise of the digitally discerning consumer and business customer has brought the logistics sectors to a seminal moment, where recognition of this new world and the uptake of digital technology is critical to remaining relevant.

The Wincanton Guide to the Digitised Supply Chain’, launched today, contends that a connected, always on, world has led to a new expectation of experience driven by businesses such as Amazon and Netflix that are able to deliver anything, whether it be goods, services or entertainment, on demand.

The guide draws on the knowledge and experience of Wincanton experts, and organisations such as IBM, Zebra Technologies, Russel Reynolds and Segro. It provides businesses that are dependent on a resilient and functional supply chain with insight into the rapidly changing digital landscape, which is in turn transforming customer expectations.

By adopting a ‘near and next’ mind set, Wincanton has looked at the key themes that are set to define the sector in the short and medium-term, with the aim of providing actionable business advice to businesses that are already starting to make the shift, or prepared to do so immediately.

Adrian Colman, CEO of Wincanton, says: “It’s all too easy to be dazzled or confused by talk of the future, and one of the biggest issues facing businesses in our sector is the sheer number of technologies there are to learn about and choose from.

“At Wincanton, we are gearing up for the digitised supply chain by developing a deep understanding of what it takes to lead. We have produced this guide to cover the most relevant and actionable aspects of digitisation in the supply chain, with reference to the topics and tools that will bring benefits to our customers, and ultimately their customers or consumers as well.”

A selection of the themes that are covered in the guide are:

Blockchain – In a supply chain context, this has the potential to provide a new, more credible level of traceability and enable frictionless transactions on an unprecedented level
Artificial Intelligence – Every asset has a voice, delivering insights that allow operations to run more efficiently and businesses to make better decisions with improved, real-time visibility
Warehouse automation – The introduction of automation to the warehouse reinvents what has traditionally been a very labour intensive task, streamlining the process and improving convenience for the customer
The Internet of Trucks – Technology will join together the driver, truck and consignment, transmitting data constantly to improve the accuracy of delivery and reduce waste
Robotics and the hybrid workforce – Technology is helping to drive better and safe work environments and processes, and considering how to optimise the respective roles of both humans and machines in the new logistics workplace is critical

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