January 31, 2019

Four Ways Technology Will Boost Warehouse Efficiency

Receiving, put-away, picking, packing, dispatching, returns, and value-adding. These are the seven processes of every warehouse. While executed differently throughout warehouses worldwide, the need for these processes to meet the stringent performance demands of the current climate is universal. Thankfully, these four technologically-inclined tools ensure warehouses run with the utmost efficiency.
  1. The sky’s the limit with a cloud service

Instead of cluttering office space with paper and files, warehousing data can be saved using cloud-based storage. A cloud service gives logistics employees the ability to reference previous records such as inventory or billing at any point in time by creating backup files. Using our own cloud service asan example, Logmore Web contains all the data logged by QR Tags indefinitely, providing records of the successes and failures in the supply chain for years to come. That pesky bureau wants you to show the products were good to use now, after three years of shipping? With any good reporting system, just do a quick search and download the report to be done with that nuisance already.

  1. Invest in robust robotics

Smart robots are being developed to streamline the management of warehouse inventory, such as flow, storage, and organization. Warehouse robotics can meet the increasing demands of order volumes, expedited shipping, and personalized order packing at lower operational and labor costs. This obviously sounds like a utopia, but taking a look at Atlas by Boston Dynamics and other such endeavours, maybe that is not so far away in the future after all. The way logistics experts work is going to change for sure.

  1. Artificial Intelligence is really smart

AI offers warehouses ability to see patterns while predicting future scenarios.

However, the grasp of AI technologies is short of influencing the decision-making process. It is essential to utilize both pattern and prescriptive capabilities in tandem to match the proliferation of supply chain usage. When done so effectively, users can seek more ambitious scenarios such as strategic network design and capacity planning. Did I mention that logistics expertise is going to change? This is it, managing and working in cooperation with AI (like the aforementioned Atlas) is a strong candidate for future logistics know-how.

  1. Connect to the "Internet-of-Things”

The Internet-of-Things offers an intuitive, interweaving connection to devices anywhere. This means it will ramp up the pace of decision-making, and give businesses instantaneous knowledge and access to otherwise unavailable opportunities.

A prime example of the Internet-of-Things is how UPS’s smart glasses are undergoing tests to see if they can effectively reduce labeling on packages. Other noticeable ones are Amazon's Echo and Alexa and of course, the newest data loggers.

In Conclusion

While the expectations of efficiency in warehouse processes exponentially increase, so does the effectiveness of the technology that will ensure those expectations are met—and exceeded. Stay tuned to the latest tech news to keep track of the tech revolutions of this century!

Did you find this topic interesting? I recommend also taking a look at our blog posts on the Internet-of-Things, Big Data and Extreme Automation.