Since the COVID-19 pandemic, businesses and consumers have struggled to access affordable materials. Supply chain deficiencies are significantly impacting the global market. Companies are adopting advanced technologies to optimize material usage and reduce waste.
Minimizing supply chain waste can improve product abundance and global sustainability. It also helps countries shrink their carbon footprints, supporting conservation efforts. Supply chain companies may adopt augmented reality (AR) and virtual reality (VR) technologies to reduce waste and improve efficiency.
Supply Chain Waste Challenges
Supply chains can improve their cost and energy efficiencies by reducing waste. A significant portion of waste comes from the inventory control sector. Over-ordering materials with expiration dates can adversely affect supply chain efficiencies.
Optimizing manufacturing practices can also reduce supply chain waste. Some companies purchase materials in bulk to access affordable rates. When they use only a portion of the goods, they generate preventable waste.
Reducing waste is especially important in food supply chains. As the billion individuals, food distribution becomes even more essential. Many individuals experience hunger every day, increasing the demand for food waste reduction efforts.
Supply chain companies may use AR and VR to limit waste and improve corporate social responsibility. Governments are holding corporations responsible for their waste production. Businesses can abide by sustainability regulations by adopting advanced technologies.
AR and VR in Supply Chain Management
Supply chain companies are investing in more AR and VR technologies than ever before. In 2017, in these technological advancements. In 2019, nearly 34% of the industry leaders planned on integrating AR and VR devices into their business models.
The technologies support remote employees through the pandemic by offering accessibility and mobility features. Employees can quickly communicate remotely using AR and VR video conferencing. A future development may be smart glasses for managing warehouse inventory remotely
Helping supply chain operators work from home can reduce transportation waste, too. About 27% of greenhouse gas emissions come from the transportation sector. Limiting the number of employees on the road can significantly decrease pollution, which helps supply chain companies attract more eco-consumers
Limiting emissions waste with AR and VR training can enhance global sustainability. The technological systems can increase companies’ productivity levels by Completing more tasks with fewer resources in a shorter time may reduce energy waste.
Technological Advancements in Shipping
Companies can reduce warehouse disorganization and location confusion using VR technology. Warehouse operators can use smart lenses to scan items’ barcodes, improving picking and packing speeds.
AR may also improve shipping professionals’ accuracy and speed.
Shipping inspectors additionally use AR equipment to photograph products and autonomously compile data online.
As e-commerce demands increase, shipping companies can manage global orders using advanced technology. Additionally, AR and VR systems provide business owners with economic and environmental benefits.
Benefits of Using AR and VR
Using AR and VR in the supply chain industry can reduce the number of job site injuries. Employees can use smart glasses to safely and efficiently stack products on carts and in trucks. Smart systems strategically plan material stacking to limit falls.
Another benefit of VR technology is improving delivery safety. Supply chain companies can use VR training systems to simulate unsafe delivery scenarios. They may help drivers determine the best response methods to delivery challenges.
The Future of Sustainable Supply Chains
Down the line, supply chain companies may utilize AR and VR systems to reduce supply chain waste. They can improve their employees’ health and well-being by lowering surface-level and air pollution. Company owners may further minimize their waste by connecting supply chain technologies to the clean electric grid.
About the author:
Jane works as an environmental and energy writer. She is also the editor-in-chief of Environment.co.