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How AR Enhances Operational Performance in Logistics Industry

By Ankur Shah. Originally published at ValueWalk.

Metaverse

The emergence of Augmented Reality technology has opened up a whole new world of possibilities in just about every industry. Logistics is no exception when it comes to utilizing this innovative technology.

As you already know, the logistics industry deals with the transportation and consolidation of cargo from one place to a different location. This process relies on equipment and machinery controlled and operated by highly skilled specialists.

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This post talks about how augmented reality can improve the operational performance of logistics companies by enhancing their workflows and guaranteeing greater safety levels for workers.

Last-Mile Delivery

One of the main reasons to implement AR in logistics is to facilitate last-mile delivery. The industry has seen a significant increase in package deliveries due to e-commerce and other on-demand services. This has created problems for many businesses, especially small businesses and startups that don’t have sophisticated delivery systems.

Businesses can use augmented reality technology to improve last-mile delivery logistics by implementing it into their supply chain and those of their partners. It can even provide more affordable deliveries, so customers can find the cheapest way to ship a car or other products of even lesser sizes.

For example, warehouses with AR technology can track shipments in real-time and update delivery status via a mobile app. The technology also allows companies to provide accurate information on the location of a package to the customer.

One of the ways this is being applied is through drones delivery, allowing customers to track packages in real-time. The supplier can see a live video stream from the drone’s perspective during flight to ensure the package’s safety. Recently, Walmart started testing drone delivery.

Load and Navigation Optimization

By using augmented reality feedback, dispatchers can reduce loading times by optimizing their routes based on AR scan results. It helps them find the most efficient way to load freight items into a container or truck, considering the requirements of freight forwarders or shippers. This is particularly useful in vehicle transportation.

This ultimately ensures delivery clarity. With the help of AR, delivery drivers can get more precise instructions on picking up and delivering shipments. These instructions can include essential details such as the address, consignee’s name, delivery time, and more. Getting this information in real-time allows drivers to make efficient decisions for an optimal route.

Because drivers can visually see their assigned packages reflected in the truck alongside other packages, they can speed up their loading time. Since there is no additional paperwork needed, drivers can save time from having to sort through multiple pages in a cargo list.

Indeed, navigation through augmented reality is one of AR’s most prominent use cases in logistics. The primary purpose of AR navigation is to superimpose directions on an operator’s field of view. This prevents them from getting lost along their delivery route and reduces handling time for delivering packages to customers at their home or work address. With AR, drivers follow the highlighted paths on their smart glasses instead of constantly checking their GPS devices for directions.

Maintenance Planning

Augmented reality helps managers plan maintenance tasks for their equipment or facilities more effectively. For example, a manager can use an AR solution to access the inventory of spare parts needed during the maintenance process. The solution will also allow them to view manuals and other documents related to their operating conditions, enabling them to determine whether they need servicing or not.

Augmented reality in logistics is also used as a troubleshooting guide during product assembly or repair processes. It provides step-by-step instructions with interactive visualizations to be presented on a digital display device at the right place and time.

This makes maintenance work faster and easier. The inspection process can be made simpler and more efficient by using AR instructions to conduct inspections on vehicles, cargo, or buildings.

Such instructions could display relevant maintenance information, fault codes, and other vital details that would otherwise require manual checking or referencing from an instruction manual.

Warehouse Management

Warehouses and distribution centers can be very complex operating environments. AR technology is used to improve productivity and efficiency in warehouse management. AR helps manage warehouses because it is easy to design the warehouse layout in 3D with augmented reality features.

It also identifies where items are placed and how they are organized, allowing easy access and retrieval. The technology integrates warehouse management solutions with 3D models to make it easier for workers to identify the exact location of items using a tablet or a mobile device.

AR Warehouse Management system is used to locate stock items, read product labels, and check inventory levels within a warehouse or store. It allows you to find an item quickly without manually looking through shelves or reading barcodes.

Store managers and supervisors also use the system as it helps them keep track of inventory without physically examining each shelf or stockroom. This ensures that products are always available when customers need them while reducing time spent searching for items manually.

Conclusion

While the digital revolution continues to break completely new grounds, AR in logistics is already being used by many companies to increase operational efficiency and lower costs. The list of use cases for augmented reality in logistics goes on and on, especially since technology does not stop advancing.

The level of automation continues to increase in logistics, reducing the need for human resources with every passing day. This is why every company must be ready to face this challenge to remain competitive and not fall behind technological trends.

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