Machine Learning is Transforming the Supply Chain Industry
Dale Sharpe
June 14, 2024

Machine learning is encroaching on us quicker than ever. It offers many benefits, from large scale data processing to automating daily tasks to free up human hours for more personal aspects.

It also provides a layer of data security, as the amount of data seen by humans is minimal and heavy layers of encryption can be applied to a machine, unlike a human.


Within every supply chain, the demand for same-day or next-day delivery is an ever-present developing industry. Quick turnarounds in logistics is an essential service now, not a luxury. Consumers seem to perceive same-day delivery as attractive if it costs less than seven to eight percent of the basket value and conversions are more than 30% once the shipping cost is less than seven percent of basket value.

Utilising machine learning in your supply chain can help to speed up order picking and packing, for locating items, and in warehouses equipped with robotics, bringing orders for fulfilment.


We’ve all had a shipping notification, whether that be in-app, text or email. Artificial intelligence (AI) is a massive part of this; no longer is a human required to update the order status manually, it is pushed through a sequence using barcodes, locators and NFC tags.

Both you and the customer can instantly see the location and status of any one order at any given point in time. Without AI, this would be a lot trickier.


According to a survey, North America is facing a lack of suppliers’ consistency in terms of delivery and quality performance. It has been observed that a lack of skilled labour is the most significant problem in the area.

Machine learning forecasts errors that can help reduce issues up to 50% with the help of ML techniques. In turn, this helps with the labour issue, as consistent problems are shown with in-depth analytics and reporting.

You can also track areas of problem, such as a specific retailer or distribution centre proving to be consistently problematic. Using AI to automatically generate notifications to stakeholders, management, and relevant persons can minimise admin tasks massively.


Security within the supply chain is a massive issue, especially as cybercriminals become more and more sophisticated. From DDoS attacks to ransomware, there are many techniques used to restrict access or gain data illegally.

Machine learning can help by enforcing stringent security measures, learning user behaviour to create an alert system of suspicious activity, even down to fraudulent payments.

You can then authenticate, in a multi-factor way, suspicious activity and prevent cyber-attacks at the outset, rather than them going undiscovered for hours.

While it may seem scary, machine learning and artificial intelligence propose many benefits for 3PL.

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