How does the “control tower” help logistics companies improve operations?

What exactly is a control tower?

The concept of the “control tower” is increasingly becoming prevalent in the supply chain management and that means having the ability to track deliveries in real time, which in return helps make the delivery process more efficient.

 A control tower is a hub for visibility, decision-making, and action, based on real-time analytics.

In last-mile delivery, there are challenges that businesses need to overcome like lack of visibility, allocation of drivers and speed as well as inefficiency. This means, companies will not only have to incorporate new tech, but also adopt new strategies so they don’t risk becoming irrelevant in this competitive market.

By creating an ecosystem which focuses on transparency, companies can have visibility into the order to reduce the risk of potential issues as well as gain data on how to better manage orders.

What are the control tower’s key features?

Control towers offer features like end-to-end visibility and advanced automation.

  • End-to-end visibility and control – visibility over the order, drivers and third party logistics partners
  • Real-time tracking – this can be done through smart devices and helps create an easy communication with drivers as well as allows having visibility and managing orders easily
  • Omni-channel access – have access to information on any device and be able to share it and collaborate in real-time
  • Data analytics  delivery management software utilizes data analytics to efficiently direct the field workforce and last-mile delivery to their intended destinations, speeding up the delivery process while maintaining the quality of the delivery process.
  • Notifications and alerts on-the-go – quickly have the possibility to resolve disruptions before they disrupt your business

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How can companies benefit from the control tower?

When issues occur, companies can make use of this concept through tech like a delivery management software to get a live update or retrieve the necessary information without depending on third parties. Visibility ensures that they have the data to know exactly which actions to take at each step of the process.

Staff who are at the helm of the control tower can make informed decisions based on feedback received from this centralized system. By collecting data from the daily delivery processes, control towers also offer unique insight into performance.

With automated tools, staff can perform analyses to optimize decisions, pinpoint a process breakdown and manage orders better based on cycle times.

How can companies better manage their last-mile delivery?

Tech is transforming the supply chain considerably, offering more insight into what is happening at any time in the delivery process. Real-time visibility allows companies to identify potential issues and correct them before they escalate.

control tower logistics

According to an in-depth article on the control tower written in PWC’s Strategy&, driving the transformation to the smart supply chain are two tightly intertwined trends.

On one hand, new technologies like big data analytics, the cloud, and the Internet of Things are pushing into the market.

On the other, more exacting expectations on the part of consumers, employees, and business partners are pulling companies to develop more reliable and responsive supply chains.

control tower logistics
Image credit: PwC

Keeping up with the changes in the customer behaviour and maintaining a competitive cost are key challenges which many companies face today.

This is why a control tower acts as a centralized hub that uses real-time data from a company’s existing, integrated data management to integrate processes across the end-to-end last-mile delivery.

Re-imagining logistics requires adaptability and constantly ensuring you are aware of what the trends are in both the last-mile and tech environments.

This is why when real-time tech is coupled with traditional logistics business models, the result can be an intuitive, agile delivery operational workflow that will improve the performance of your business while allowing you to save cost at the same time.

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