In the aftermath of the global pandemic, and in the midst of the ongoing war between Russia and Ukraine, supply chain management is at the top of every business’s mind. The shortages of goods and services continue to have ripple effects around the world, placing logistics and transportation companies under a lot of pressure.
In the middle of all this, successful transport and logistics companies are leveraging a slew of innovative data storage and management technologies to cut costs, streamline operations, and enhance customer service. However, this is no easy task in an era where data volumes are skyrocketing and harnessing this data for actionable insights has become crucial to survival. This deluge of data has made it difficult for companies to keep up with the demand for information. As a result, many transportation and logistics companies are struggling to find ways to effectively manage the data.
There are several other problems that this sector is facing too, and to unpack what they are, Tarsus Distribution and HPE recently partnered with TechCentral to conduct a survey, which delved into the challenges SA’s transport and logistics providers face, where their concerns lie, and how they manage their workloads with their existing storage investments.
As with most organisations, data is at the heart of every transportation and logistics entity. It is used for tracking shipments, planning routes, as well as managing inventory. There was a time when data was relatively static, and these organisations depended on manual processes to update and keep their records in order. But in recent years, data volumes have exploded, as businesses in the transport and logistics sector have begun employing sensors and other devices to generate real-time data about the ins and outs of their operations.
A shortage is data analytics skills is plaguing organisations in every sector. The demand for data scientists is far exceeding the supply, leaving many entities battling to find the skills they need to manage their data effectively. Similarly, there is a growing shortage of data engineers, who are tasked with designing data pipelines and data architectures that can handle complex data management processes that are so integral to this sector. The talent shortage in the transportation and logistics industry is compounded even further by the fact that many of the best and most qualified data practitioners are employed in other industries, such as finance and healthcare, who often have deeper pockets, so it’s hard to compete.
Data security and availability is another major challenge for transport and logistics businesses, as they have to handle sensitive customer, employee, and financial data. In fact, survey-wide data security and availability were the top concerns for businesses in every industry, cited by 44% and 38% respectively. A successful data breach can result in a loss of revenue, massive fines being levied by regulators, and more importantly, loss of customer trust - a cost that cannot be quantified. The challenge for transport and logistics entities is to find a good balance between data security and accessibility, to ensure it is safe from unauthorised access, yet available to employees who require it to do their jobs. This is no easy task, as in this industry, data needs to be shared across a wide network of stakeholders, such as government agencies, private entities, and international businesses too. All in all, managing data in this sector is an onerous and arduous task.
While data governance and compliance is a concern for every business, the transport and logistics industry is subject to stringent safety regulations, which require careful management of data related to any incidents, be they accidents or maintenance. Similarly, due to the nature of the business, transport and logistics companies have to deal with very specific environmental regulations, such as the detailed tracking of their emissions. Again, failure to comply can result in hefty fines and reputational damage, which is whey when asked what they are looking for in their next storage solution, better data protection was a priority for 30% of companies in general.
Luckily for transport and logistics organisations, HPE has a solution to meet their needs, and help them with all their data management and storage requirements, to build an intelligent computing foundation for the hybrid cloud and bring them the computing capabilities they need. Firstly, HPE ProLiant Servers are fuelling the next wave of digital transformation, by making management tasks simple and automated and by establishing a solid foundation for an open, hybrid cloud platform.
Then, HPE’s SimpliVity is a powerful, enterprise-grade hyper-convergence platform that brings together the organisations server with the high-performance data services that help to streamline IT operations, providing an intelligent compute foundation for a hybrid cloud offering. This brings unmatched workload optimisation, security, and automation to these. SimpliVity’s hyper-convergence puts the company’s full virtualised IT infrastructure and advanced data services into one integrated powerhouse and helps developers rapidly deploy applications at cloud-like speed while significantly cutting costs and simplifying backup and restore.
Lastly, HPE’s Nimble Storage brings everything from integrated backup and disaster recovery to seamless IT operations. Transport and logistics entities have enough on their plate by just addressing all the data challenges they face, without having to deal with legacy storage issues and disruptions. HPE Nimble Storage makes it child’s play to begin leveraging the power and agility of next-generation storage by offering an enterprise-grade platform with proven and guaranteed 6-9s availability and extreme data integrity and resiliency.
Is your data storage and management plan up to scratch? Do you want to ensure that you’ve covered all your bases, making sure your data storage plan meets your business’s needs now and into the future? If you do, download the following checklists to help you do just that: