In the right hands, cloud technology can streamline operations and introduce new revenue streams, helping you generate value throughout your shipping program.
With the rise of cloud technology within the shipping industry, it’s essential to understand just how it can give you and your partners a competitive edge. The cloud — a method of computing that provides users with access to shared pools of information stored online — is capable of much more than just reining in overhead. Indeed, it can significantly boost your ROI by creating new opportunities to maximize efficiency throughout your supply chain. From ensuring complete integration with Internet of Things (IoT) capabilities to performing increasingly sophisticated data collection, cloud technology can help your company lower costs and generate value in every aspect of your operations.
Reduce Operational Costs
Supply chain managers face a perpetual dilemma: how do you drive down costs without sacrificing quality?
With cloud technology, it’s possible for shipping and logistics companies to strike a productive balance, especially when it comes to IT infrastructure. By placing relevant data in a shared digital space, your team won’t have to spend time and resources maintaining a complex informational network of your own. Cloud hosts such as Google and Amazon have their own teams on hand to manage the hardware hosting your proprietary data, ensuring that your business has unfettered access to it whenever it’s needed. As a result, your team — as well as your business partners — can redirect your IT spending toward improving the shipping infrastructure that you can’t outsource.
Additionally, cloud hosting allows businesses to scale as needed. Because you don’t need to directly invest in the hardware and manpower needed to maintain it, you’re free to rely on the cloud as much or as little as you need, helping you modify your shipping strategies in response to market conditions. Thanks to this agility, your supply chain can meet fluctuating demand without breaking the bank.
Boost IoT Capabilities
IoT technology integrates your shipping and logistics network into a more sophisticated supply chain. With advanced asset tracking, state-of-the-art shipping containers, and interconnected fleets, IoT promises to make your operation more responsive than ever.
That said, IoT capabilities rely on an unimpeded flow of data throughout your network. Your interconnected devices can be the most advanced on the market, but if they don’t have constant access to quality information, your investment in IoT technology won’t lead to any substantial benefits. With the cloud, however, your digital supply chain will be bolstered with the most up-to-date data available in real time. For managers at every stage of the shipping and logistics process, this uninterrupted stream of information can help them decongest bottlenecks, improve warehouse efficiency, and better organize information, leading to more informed decision-making and rising ROI.
Collect and Protect Better Data
By feeding more information into the cloud, IoT devices expand the pool of data shared on it. This data, in turn, opens opportunities for new revenue streams.
For example, a company shipping perishable goods may be interested in logistics providers who offer real-time updates on the temperature and humidity levels of items during transit. Shippers interested in such premium services can quickly identify qualified partners by reviewing this cloud-hosted data. With intuitive sharing and widespread accessibility, cloud technology further enables greater cooperation between business partners that can raise revenues for one, quality for the other, and ROI for both.
The cloud can also protect proprietary data in ways that in-house servers can’t. By storing information with off-site cloud hosts, you can safeguard your business’s essential information and keep your supply chain up and running even if a local disaster or system failure damages your own technological infrastructure. With reliable backup solutions, cloud services have protocols in place to ensure that your operation can retrieve uncorrupted data as soon as possible.
Invest in the Right Providers
As with any emerging technology, cloud services will fail to provide their potential benefits if they’re not introduced to your supply chain strategically and methodically. While it’s tempting to invest in the latest and greatest in the shipping and logistics industry as soon as possible, consider partnering with third-party logistics (3PL) or integrated logistics services providers (ISPs) first. With their expertise, cloud technology can lead to better decision-making and a more holistic understanding of your shipping operations.
At Primary Freight, we have over 20 years of experience in the shipping and logistics industry. From IoT to cloud services integration, we have a proven track record of using the most current shipping technologies to boost ROI through responsible, data-driven management. Regardless of your business’s needs, we can work with you to develop a customized solution that helps you take full advantage of your shipping technologies. Backed by our award-winning customer service team, we stand ready to help you maximize the profitability of your shipping strategies.
If you’d like to learn more about Primary Freight’s array of services and capabilities, contact us today at (800) 635-0013.