How is blockchain influencing logistics operations?

24 Mar 2020
Blockchain

The blockchain is a technology that has helped transform current business models. You may have been hearing about blockchain for some time and that it has brought about a revolution in the economy and is key to the future of business. But if we also talk about the logistics sector, the impact of blockchain will be very high, and this is what we are going to talk about in this article.

 

What is blockchain and how does it work?

Blockchain technology runs cryptocurrencies such as Bitcoin, but it can be used in different fields such as logistics. With the blockchain , transactions are guaranteed and there is greater transparency, companies trust each other and collaborate with more confidence.

In order to understand how the blockchain works, you need to know that it is a set of computers that are connected to each other and use a common protocol to validate and store the same information. This is where transactions between computers on the network are recorded.

The blockchain is a system where, every time someone enters new data, the information is transmitted to the computer network for individual validation. Therefore, this system does not need anyone external to verify its operation, but each computer is in charge of keeping the data and checking them.

 

It is a secure system that meets a series of characteristics such as the following:

  • Transparency. In the blockchain, everything that happens is recorded at the same time on each of the computers in the network. This means that all participants have access to information in real time.
  • Robustness. In the blockchain, no changes can be made after the fact. You can enter new information, but you cannot change existing information, nor can you delete it.
  • Trust. The information is shared with everyone in the system, so there is no need for third parties to verify the data.
  • Encrypted. In order to promote privacy and anonymity, the blockchain allows encryption at different levels.

 

Uses of blockchain in logistics

It is a technology that appeared relatively recently, but it has proven its effectiveness in supporting financial operations, so more and more logistics companies have begun to include it in the processes involving the use of networks.

One of the most important uses of blockchain within the logistics field is that, thanks to this system, smart contracts, also known as “Smart Contracts”, can be made. Within logistics, blockchain has different uses whether for land transport, traceability or international trade.

 

#Blockchain and international trade

Different agents are involved in international trade, which generates a multitude of documents. Thanks to the blockchain, a secure network between all parties involved in the supply chain process is achieved. In this way, the authenticity of electronic documents is validated on the spot, without the intervention of a third party.

In addition, this system benefits the elimination of paper, allowing the management of documentation and payments from a single channel. In this way, communication errors are reduced and paperwork is reduced because there is a reliable, solid and highly secure source of data.

 

#Transportation and blockchain

The main benefit of this system for road transport is that collaborative networks can be established without the need for intermediaries. If we focus on the practical level, by applying blockchain in logistics we create virtual spaces and platforms for shippers to receive orders directly from carriers without intermediaries.

At the same time, the blockchain facilitates the management of cargo from anywhere in the world. In addition, there is the possibility of making “Smart Contracts”, which reduces the risk of default and non-payment.

 

#Blockchain and traceability

Thanks to blockchain technology, the status of a product can be recorded in real time, no matter what stage of the logistics chain it is in and who is handling it. An example could be the transport of fruit, for which a digital fingerprint can be created for each consignment that is available to transport participants. This footprint can include a wide variety of data, such as temperature or treatments that have been performed on it.

As can be seen, blockchain is a technology that has arrived in the logistics sector to stay and for companies to take advantage of all the benefits that this system offers them. At FIELDEAS we are committed to technological trends such as blockchain and how it can help companies and businesses to improve their processes.

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Lola Hurtado

Marketing Manager at FIELDEAS

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