An Update on Amazon's Logistics Automation Plan

An Update on Amazon’s Logistics Automation Plan

Shipping with Amazon (SWA), the online giant’s fledgling delivery service, is a self-contained system that covers the entire shipping process from seller to consumer. Eventually, SWA will offer shipping services to other companies in direct competition with UPS and FedEx.

The impact of SWA on the logistics industry cannot be overstated. In addition to utilizing state-of-the-art physical equipment such as an electric yard truck, traditional carriers need to embrace automation to stay competitive in the logistics industry.

Benefits of Logistics Automation

Why should carriers integrate automated logistics?

– Most organizations have a primary goal of scaling their business, a process that’s immeasurably more difficult without automation.

– Automation makes it easier for providers to manage and coordinate the efforts of dissimilar functions, including manufacturing, distribution and transportation.

– Automated delivery management systems include robust functionality for tasks such as truck load mapping and dispatching.

– Productivity improves when less time is spent correcting avoidable errors.

Using a Workflow-Driven Approach

Conventional wisdom holds that automation is more suitable for companies with large fleets, but even those with smaller fleets can reap the advantages of automation with targeted workflows.

With a workflow-driven approach, a simple task such as scanning orders at pick-up and drop-off becomes more efficient with automation. Accuracy increases, which in turn reduces the number of time-consuming disputes.

According to Dan Stoll, technical product manager at Nintex, automation hasn’t been a priority for legacy shipping providers. Stoll believes that “the Amazon effect” will prompt many of these companies to make some long-overdue changes.

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