With the high-speed pace of today's economy, organisations must remain agile and equipped with the latest technology to stay ahead of the competition. The transport and distribution industry is no exception to this, with advancements such as AI and sophisticated cyber threats keeping businesses constantly on their toes. Cloud is a key enabler of innovation and agility - a necessity in the current landscape, however it is not without its challenges. In this blog, we'll look at the benefits of cloud technology for the transport and distribution industry, as well as the challenges these organisations face.
Cloud technology offers immense benefits for businesses in the transport and distribution industry. First and foremost, cloud technology offers scalability and flexibility. Whether businesses need to scale up or down on IT resources, cloud technology offers the ability to quickly do so. This feature ensures businesses can handle peak periods without overinvesting in infrastructure. Cloud technology also enables real-time data analysis and collaboration, providing businesses with valuable insights that can help optimise operations, enhance customer experiences, and drive strategic decision-making.
It can also be a cost-effective decision, reducing expenditure on physical infrastructure. Cloud technology providers take on the costs of hardware, maintenance, and upgrades, freeing up businesses to invest their capital in other areas, such as customer service and innovation.
However, transitioning to the cloud can be a complex process. Challenges include:
Data security: The transport and distribution industry deals with sensitive data, including delivery schedules and customer information. It is crucial that this data is protected from unauthorised access and malicious actors.
System compatibility: businesses must ensure that their existing systems can integrate with new cloud technology. Many organisations in this industry work with legacy systems that may not be compatible with cloud-based solutions. Transitioning these systems to the cloud requires careful planning and execution to avoid business interruptions. Additionally, these organisations often have a wide range of devices in use, from handheld scanners to fleet management systems. Each of these devices needs to connect seamlessly with the cloud infrastructure, ensuring uninterrupted data flow and operational efficiency.
Technical complexities: there are numerous steps involved in migrating to the cloud, including data transfers and reconfiguring applications, which requires experienced personnel. Many organisations don't have the necessary expertise in-house, which is further exacerbated by the current skills gap in the tech industry.
Supplier landscape: the multifaceted nature of the transport and distribution industry further compounds these challenges. For instance, these businesses often have to work with multiple suppliers and partners, each of which may use different systems and protocols. This diversity can make it especially difficult to ensure seamless integration when transitioning.
Device proliferation: the transport and distribution industry relies heavily on a variety of devices such as GPS trackers, delivery-management devices, and mobile applications. Each device represents a potential point of vulnerability that must be secured, and each also needs to be compatible with the cloud system.
Geographical spread: companies in this sector often have warehouses, offices, and transport hubs scattered across different locations. This results in a more complex IT infrastructure that requires a more cautious and meticulous approach to cloud migration to ensure all areas of the business are effectively integrated and secured within the new system.
The complexity of managing such a vast and diverse device ecosystem can be a significant hurdle to cloud adoption, however the benefits cannot be ignored. By working with a Managed Service Provider (MSP), they can help you navigate the complexities and build a roadmap to success. An MSP such as Advanced will possess in-depth knowledge and expertise in cloud technology, providing comprehensive cloud services that can help guide you through this process. They offer strategic advice on cloud adoption, help with the transition, and manage ongoing operations.
Do you need help optimising your Azure environment? Advanced can perform an Azure Optimisation Review, which will help assess your security posture, get costs under control, help ensure efficient scalability and validate your position against best practice.
Or, if you’re just looking to start your cloud journey, we can provide a Strategy and Governance Workshop which will help accelerate your journey to Microsoft Azure by looking at your cloud adoption strategy, best practices, CAF alignment, and a design and technical architecture review.
If you’re interested in either of the above engagements, please contact firstname.lastname@example.org for more information.