The Supply Chain Industry is one of the trailblazers when it comes to technology. No wonder we can forecast how self driving vehicles will affect the Supply Chain.
The most obvious benefit is lower costs due to fewer truck drivers. But there are other advantages that improve efficiency and can lower the cost by as much as 40% per kilometre!
Self-driving trucks reduce driver errors and their environmental impact by having fewer vehicles on the road. This is possible through higher efficiency due to 24/7 traveling without requiring driver rest time.
Adapting the new technology, it will probably first take place in secure and private areas like warehouses and open-air sites. The main areas affected by self-driving vehicles will probably be warehousing (autonomous loading, auto pallet movers), line haul transportation (assisted highway trucking) and last mile delivery (parcel station loading, shared cars, self-driving parcels).
The first step towards this approach will be hybrid automated technologies, which are still controlled by the driver, but have a more automated driving process. These are already embraced by several automotive manufacturers.