INTERVIEW: How AI can prevent supply chain disruptions

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Greg Urban, PRO partner at Last Mile Experts in the United Arab Emirates (UAE), discusses his presentation at Parcel+Post Expo 2022, including details about the role artificial intelligence (AI) can play in preventing supply chain disruptions.

What is your presentation about?
I’ll be talking about artificial intelligence (AI) and the role it can play in preventing supply chain disruptions. The years 2020 and 2021 brought a dramatic change in supply chain resilience. The increases and decreases in demand, port closures and defaults by subcontractors have become the everyday life of supply chain managers. There is no indication that this will change in the coming years. Postal operators are part of the chain that has been disrupted and must be prepared for rapid changes in the market environment. The presentation focuses on introducing methods that can predict disruptions using artificial intelligence and support or automate operations decisions. The audience will learn about the major causes of disruptions in supply chains. How might disturbances affect an entire company? They will also learn how AI can find predictive information from billions of data on the internet and alert about danger.

What recent developments in artificial intelligence can postal operators implement in their operations?
There are plenty of areas where AI can support postal operators. For example, customer service ware bots can solve typical customer issues through intelligent sorting; lost and damages investigation based on video recording; claims; predictive maintenance of warehouse equipment; resource planning based on external factors data, e.g. weather, internet traffic, customers’ promotions and delivery route optimization; and finally, supply chain disruption predictions based on data from internet media.

What are the challenges to watch out for when implementing AI in the supply chain?
AI is not a ready solution from the shelf. Most implementations need development, tests, data and time for learning. They require internal research and development capabilities and readiness for collaboration with academic centers and business. However, AI can help everywhere where the human brain cannot process large amounts of data and where there is a series of repetitive events, e.g. sorting, video recording and internet monitoring. This is how operators can integrate automation with existing human staff for optimal efficiency.

Don’t miss Urban’s presentation, ‘Artificial intelligence in preventing supply chain disruptions’, as part of the dedicated ‘latest innovative technologies – AI, data, autonomous vehicles, robotics’ session on Day 3 (Thursday October 20, 2022) of Parcel+Post Expo in Frankfurt, Germany. 

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As the latest addition to the UKi Media & Events team, Elizabeth brings research skills from her English degree to her keen interest in the meteorological and transportation industries. Having taken the lead in student and startup publications, she has gained experience in editing online and print titles on a wide variety of topics. In her current role as Editorial Assistant, Elizabeth will create new and topical content on the pioneering technologies in transportation, logistics and meteorology.

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