Gartner Research

Consumer Goods CIOs Must Prepare for Autonomous Distribution

Published: 08 November 2016

ID: G00317570

Analyst(s): Ivar Berntz


Autonomous distribution will become plausible by 2020 because of the development of goods distribution through unmanned aerial vehicles (drones) and autonomous boats and vehicles. To stay competitive, CIOs in consumer goods companies must prepare for the tipping point.

Table Of Contents
  • Impacts


Impacts and Recommendations

  • "Things" will increasingly be placing the orders; thus, consumer goods stock-outs could lead to sharp market share swings as those things look for alternate sources — unless companies source goods themselves via a broker network
  • The emergence of AD will force changes in consumer goods companies' physical and organizational structures, such as the redrawing of sales territories, logistics hub placements and routes
  • AD will enable CIOs in consumer goods companies to attain higher asset utilization, which should help reduce empty runs and freight costs
  • AD will increase pressure on CIOs in consumer goods companies to provide 24/7 delivery as customers come to expect it

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