Artificial intelligence and logistics is the perfect combination for businesses seeking a competitive edge in their supply chain operations. Nishith Rastogi, CEO & Co-founder of Locus in an exclusive interaction with Analytics Insight discusses about the company’s Logistics Automation platform which optimizes operations to provide consistency, efficiency and transparency to organizations worldwide.
Analytics Insight: Kindly brief us about Locus, its specialization and the services it company offers.
Nishith: Locus is a state of the art decision-making platform, which optimizes logistics operations to provide consistency, efficiency & transparency. Locus aims to deliver transformational value in logistics for organizations, with proprietary algorithms for solving complex problems such as load balancing, route optimization and container utilization. Locus offers its entire technology stack, in the form of a platform as a service. By 2020, we aim to automate all the human decisions in sending a package from Point A to Point B using artificial intelligence and machine learning. The company was founded by IIT & BITS Pilani alumni in 2015 and has a stellar team of data scientists including PhDs from Carnegie Mellon University (CMU) and Tata Institute of Fundamental Research (TIFR)
Analytics Insight: Mention some of the awards, achievements, recognitions and clients’ feedback that you feel are notable and valuable for the company.
Nishith: We recently won the “Aegis Graham Bell Award” in the data science category. I was profiled by Businessworld under their ’40 Under 40 Achievers List’ in 2017. In the year 2016, we won the prestigious “TiE Lumis Partners Entrepreneurial Excellence Award” at TiE Global Summit in Delhi.
Analytics Insight: Tell us how Locus is contributing to the Big Data Analytics industry and how the company is benefiting the clients.
Nishith: Big data is administered by high volume, high velocity, high variety, and high complexity. Big data analytics inspects large amounts of data to uncover hidden patterns, correlations and other acumens. In today’s connected world, hundreds of thousands of sensors across multiple applications endlessly generate streams of data for evaluation. Automated processes gather this virtually boundless data from various sources in multiple formats. After the collection, it undergoes data processing so that the analytics can be simplified and provide actionable insights, which helps to make informed decisions.
Nowadays implementing data analytics in business is a swift way to climb up the ladder of success. With the help of data-driven insights, business owners now can take important strategic decisions. Not only can one improve productivity by shifting from manual to automated processes, it will automatically find a strategic and significant change in profitability too.
Primarily, Locus is a Logistics Automation platform, which optimizes operations to provide consistency, efficiency and transparency. Our various optimization and automation engines facilitate better management through visualisation. Our solutions include Route Optimization, Packing Engine, Tracking and Reporting.
Locus offers the following benefits to its clients using big data analytics:
• Enhance Fleet Capacity Utilization
• Reduce Overall Logistics Expenses
• Minimize Distance Travelled and Fuel Usage
• Achieve Operational Efficiency
• Streamline Delivery Process
• Deliver Exceptional Customer Experience
• Provide Real-time Insights & Analytics on Fleet Performance
Analytics Insight: Kindly share your point of view on the current scenario of the Big Data Analytics and its future.
Nishith: In this digital era, we are experiencing transformation due to technology all around us; big data being a key element. Almost every business is transforming to a digital business now, people are engaging and relying on technology more than ever before.
Organizations are opening up and understanding the significance of data and the impact it can bring to their workforce and operations. Right from optimizing the existing processes of supply-chain arrangements and workflow management to enhancing customer experience and balancing attrition, they are resorting to data for every decision. From these developments, the future of Big Data looks strong and makes it an undeniable tool of progress.
Technologies like Artificial Intelligence, Machine Learning, and IoT are relying exclusively on Big Data, this is really the technology of future.
Analytics Insight: How is Locus helping customers deliver relevant business outcomes through the adoption of the company’s technology innovations?
Nishith: Locus has built advanced proprietary algorithms to automate all phases of the logistics operations. We help customers plan, manage, dispatch and track their riders to ensure that the deliveries are done within Service Level Agreements (SLA’s). For this, the client can either directly use our dashboard and field user app or use our software development kits (SDK) in the client’s delivery app via our API’s.
Analytics Insight: What is the edge Locus has over other players in the industry?
Nishith: Locus’ intelligent algorithm solves problems of the logistics industry by factoring in real world fuzziness to support unpredictable networks, dirty location points, and 100s of exception scenarios. Our route planning engine which creates highly optimized routes respecting all business constraints (like SLA’s), 3D Packing engine that provides efficient packing configurations for loading multi-dimensional cargo into containers which ensure vehicle optimisation, and the intelligent self-learning loop in the system is what separates us from competition.
Apart from this, we have assembled a team with highbrow knowledge and experience, comprising of engineers led by ex-AWS platform engineers, PhDs from Carnegie Mellon University and Tata Institute of Fundamental Research, Sales which is led by our seed round investor, our key account manager who was Obama’s account manager for Google and multifaceted deployment team with immense operational execution experience.
Analytics Insight: Predictions in the Artificial Intelligence/ Big Data Analytics/ Machine Learning sector
Nishith: Over the next decade, AI will become an extremely commoditized technology that can be bought on the internet like other applications. The ease of use & the accessibility to these technologies would allow multiple small companies to benefit than just the big corporates or research groups with deep technology based teams.
In the agriculture and farming segment, AI and ML will take a front seat with the advent of unmanned modes of farming. Field surveillance, topographic data collection, fertilizer spray and precision farming would be deeply impacted by this phenomenon.
With big data crunching and pattern recognition becoming the buzz words of the industry and the gradual phasing out of the traditional IVR solutions, customer support and helplines would be replaced by learning enabled chatbots.
Analytics Insight: How does your company’s strategy facilitate the transformation of an enterprise?
Nishith: In the logistics scenario, we don’t just tell where a truck is, we tell you where your truck should be!
Locus provides complete automation from the point of dispatch till the order reaches the end customers. Locus’ solutions help increase the operational efficiency and resource utilisation, reduce costs, and differentiate the clients’ services with superior delivery performance. At the same time, we help the client gain full visibility & control over the entire planning & optimization process. Our analytics dashboard helps clients stay aware of all that is going on with features such as live tracking and intelligent alerts that highlight events that need attention the most.
Analytics Insight: What is your Leadership Mantra?
Nishith: “All credit is team, all mistakes are mine.”