Fuel was deemed the main culprit for the rise in logistics costs experienced in 2014. Logistics costs for 2013 were estimated at R393-billion with the number forecast to grow to about R470-billion in 2014 placing increased pressure on the logistics industry’s already strained resources.

Petrol prices in South Africa are continuously rising and even though there are occasional decreases, the impact that petrol hikes seem to have on product prices is felt by all. Once prices go up, they never seem to come down.

As a result, the interest in logistics software solutions across the African region has risen owing to the cost benefits and increased control that companies derive from these solutions.

It is a continuous challenge for logistics companies to control operational costs with the focus shifting to IT to help monitor and reduce costs.  Companies need to constantly track and record costs and, owing to both energy and fuel increases, need to implement reductions in other areas of businesses.

IT solutions, such as warehouse software and transport software, is a big life saver when it comes to cost reductions with an increased focus around the African region on the implementation of these solutions.

Warehouse and Transport Software Solutions

Warehouse software assists in automating processes and can also monitor and advise on a warehouse system’s energy usage. In addition, warehouse software leads to more efficient processes, thereby enabling cost reductions. Should labor increases and demands become unaffordable, automation can help reduce manual labour while increasing throughput in the warehousing environment.

Further, transport software can assist companies to manage fleets and to ensure optimised routes, optimal maintenance as well as time efficiency, which all lead to cost reductions. A badly managed fleet can considerably increase maintenance and fuel spend with breakdowns causing major losses in revenue and time.

Therefore, it is crucial for companies to employ software solutions that assist with data management, record keeping and scheduling of maintenance and routine tasks. The main aim of logistics software solutions is to increase efficiency through the implementation of automation which lead to cost reductions.

The integration capabilities offered by Logistics IT further ensures that companies can derive  the maximum benefit from the  software deployed in a company or warehouse and further assist with cost savings. Software solutions are continuously evolving to meet the need for reduced costs, increased efficiencies and environment-friendliness. Therefore, it is crucial to look for these aspects when implementing a solution.