The trend of Remote Work & Teleoperation refers to the global shift from the notion that employees must work in the workplace to the idea that employees can work from their homes, different workplaces, and elsewhere to get tasks done. Remote work implies availability of the technologies, infrastructure, and policies needed to support office-based tasks away from the workplace, while remote teleoperation focuses on the requirements and developments for collaborative operations-based responsibilities.
Acceleration of the Remote Work & Teleoperation trend is predominantly a response to the Covid-19 pandemic. As companies globally redefine the parameters of where we work, new structures are being implemented across industries to give workers the post-pandemic option of going back to work in an office or continuing to work remotely. This is causing rapid growth of innovative technologies which provide new capabilities supporting employee preferences.
Similarly, technological innovation is enabling remote teleoperation capabilities. To better control a device or machine remotely, companies are increasingly using robotic technologies, autonomously moving vehicles, and digital twins. An example of this can be seen from Plus One Robotics, who have developed a software solution called Yonder that enables employees to control multiple warehouse robots from any location. Yonder demonstrates the “Human-In-The-Loop” remote supervising and controlling of robotics application. Digitalization and automation are the driving forces of this trend, remotely protecting operations from disruption.
The transportation and logistics segment of the global teleoperation market accounted for 83.8 million USD in 2020, and is set to increase at a considerable CAGR of 22.7% by 2030.
While the realization timeline for this trend foresees ubiquitous adoption within the next 5 years, the impact on logistics and the supply chain will be relatively low. When a company introduces remote work and teleoperation, this will not necessarily impact the supply chain, other than perhaps to increase the number of final delivery destinations.
The impact of remote work on logistics companies is no greater than for companies in other industries, and to gauge the impact of remote teleoperation will require existing use cases to be scaled. Therefore, while the way of working will continue to change, there is no anticipated major change to the supply chain. With the developing adoption of collaborative technologies – which enable employees to interact with each other without being in the same room – the demographic of suitable people to fill operational roles expands and, at the same time, the ability to operate machinery and robotics remotely opens up an even wider pool of talent.