The term “cloud” is used in an imaginative sense to express the complexity of infrastructure required for a Cloud System. The benefits of cloud computing to freight forwarders, logistics and supply chain can never be over-emphasized. Users of the system do not know the location of applications, data centres and databases. The resources are simply In the “Cloud” at a remote third party location. Because it is a web-based system, it can be accessed from any place in the world that has internet facility, using a computer or even a smartphone. The major advantage of of the cloud is that users share resources and pay for what they use, which makes it a cost-effective option.
As I have earlier and always stated, technology is of crucial importance to supply chain and logistics. There is no way that the supply chain can succeed without technology. With the growing popularity of cloud computing and its benefits, it has become attractive to logistics and supply chain. The reasons for this can be attributed to the following;
Firstly, the supply chain and logistics require many partners to work together seamlessly in order to achieve the best results. At every point, everyone in the supply chain must pass key information to another. With international logistics, tat means crossing time zones, cultures, languages, currencies and regulatory obstacles.
Cloud computing simply allows users, regardless of location and time, to drop the information in the ‘cloud’ and the next participants pick it up. People do not need to wake up late at night to speak to someone in another geographic time zone to pass information.
Secondly, business processes and controls are projected around the world so that organizations and partners can collaborate and share data in real-time. For example, partners can determine inventory requirements based on demand fluctuations and buffer stock. Because this is done within the same system, it makes it cost-effective and the cost is based on what is used.
Thirdly, for small and medium-sized businesses that cannot afford expensive IT infrastructure, the use of Cloud-based SaaS can allow them to leverage the technology to support their businesses.
Fourthly, with cloud computing, the need for multiple WMS and TMS systems is eliminated. This has the advantage of preventing delays that can be caused by mistakes and miscommunication from multiple users. The cloud is able to coordinate information in an integrated manner for a specific solution with clear data.
There is the need for a sound and proper supply chain management decision making at the three levels of management: operational, tactical and strategic. There are three basic ways a company can use the Cloud. This, of course, will depend on the capacity, size and general needs of the company. They are:
- Infrastructure as a Service (IaaS): The IT company providing basic computer capacity.
- Platform as a Service (PaaS): The IT company providing hardware
- Software as a Service (SaaS): The IT company providing software
Freight forwarding and logistics companies normally prefer the Software as Service.
Contact us today for easy shipping.
Emry Freight…Shipping Simplified!
Photo Credit: Google Pics