The “My Way” Highway: Disruption in last-mile logistics

Andrew Grove’s quote is nearly a quarter century old, but it could have been written today. The COVID-19 pandemic was one of those strategic inflection points for e-commerce supply chains. Fundamental changes occurred in supplier offerings and consumer preferences during this challenging time. Such structural changes cannot be addressed by continuing to do what we did before, but trying to do it better, faster and cheaper. Instead, they shift the boundaries that decisions are based on, and make new things not only possible but necessary. Whether these changes are a threat or an opportunity depends on the actions taken by supply chain leaders and challengers.

We have identified five trends that are driving the e-commerce supply chain inflection point.

  1. (Accelerating) rise of e-commerce
  2. Rise of the retailer logistician
  3. Rise of same-day/next-day delivery
  4. Rise of the data scientist
  5. Rise of robotics, automation and autonomy

They’re not new: Most companies doing e-business were already grappling with them before the spring of 2020. But the trends accelerated the change; what might normally have taken five years to unfold, happened in five months during the pandemic.

When new trends in the market are small, they can be ignored. When those trends move from niche to mainstream, ignoring them becomes a death sentence.

While the five trends mentioned above don’t necessarily signal the end of traditional supply chain networks, and they do have an effect on all aspects of supply chain management, our analysis speaks directly to the growth of e-commerce supply chains. Let’s look at each in more detail.

Read the original article from SCMR