E-Commerce companies are looking for ways that they can optimize warehouses and reduce staff burnout, despite online sales skyrocketing in the years since the outbreak. Warehouse automation.
What exactly is warehouse automation? It is possible to imagine a fully automated warehouse system, with humans as an afterthought. Not quite. As it sounds, manufacturers use sensors, robots, and other AI equipment in order to complete time-consuming tasks that were impossible for humans. Warehouse automation is designed to speed up fulfillment and increase efficiency, rather than requiring humans to do the same tasks at a lower rate. These robots can optimize warehouse space as well as company workflow. This opens up more opportunities for human development in other areas. Warehouse automation can automate time-consuming tasks, and it does so quickly and efficiently without taking over the time of manual workers.
Common Types Of Warehouse Automation Fulfillment
There are many different types of warehouse automation. As you can see, not all warehouses work the same. Here are some of the more common types:
GTP automation will often include conveyors, vertical lifts and carousels that can potentially double fulfillment speeds.
Automatic Guided Vehicles
AGV automation will make it possible for warehouses to use wires, magnet strips and/or sensors in order to navigate through warehouses. This type is ideal for warehouses with an open floorplan and few turns.
Autonomous Mobile Robots
AMRs can be very flexible and are a popular type of warehouse automation. They can use GPS systems to find obstacles and create efficient routes through the warehouse. You can think of this robot as a robot vacuum that learns everything about your home. But it won’t clean anything. They are safe to navigate warehouses and other places that have a lot of traffic. This makes them very user-friendly.
Voice picking and tasking, or pick by-voice.
The use of speech recognition software and mobile headsets to pick warehouse automation systems can eliminate the need for handheld devices, such as barcode scanners. This will not only increase safety but also efficiency and allow for more room for error.
Automated Sortation Systems
Automation sortation systems are able to locate items on conveyors and then divert them into a warehouse using barcode scanners. This is especially effective for E-Commerce sites.
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Fewer Human Errors
Errors are bound to happen in any manual project. Warehouse automation is much more efficient than manual projects. It’s also easier to pinpoint the problem and solve it. A warehouse automation system can reduce errors that occur every day. It is now possible to send orders out without having to double and triple check. Everything was automatically pulled from its barcode or targeted area by automation. It is possible for it to be wrong if an area was incorrectly labeled. You can also make an error in the input process.
A warehouse automation system is an investment in consistency. Furthermore, you’re investing in time. Warehouse managers now have more time than ever to complete the tasks on their to-do lists. Your warehouse will grow if you focus on the right things. You’ll be able see results almost immediately. Once an automation system has been fully integrated (which can take several weeks), you will begin to see how seamless your warehouse tasks have become.
It’s not enough to invest in an automation system for one month or a year. You should also be investing in its longevity. It is well worth the investment in warehouse automation. There’s no need to worry about how your employees will handle a sale. Or how your employees might be able to fulfill all of your orders within the promised turnaround times. The robots, sensors and other automated machines can work anywhere your employees are not home. This can be very helpful for E-Commerce websites during holiday weekends and sales.
The actual cost of the investment can vary. While the initial cost is significant, labor costs will make up most of it. You can find different warehouse management softwares, and systems that are tailored to specific warehouse types. This is because not all warehouses or companies are the same.
Automated systems can not only assist with the fulfillment of orders but they also help to manage inventory. No more checking item after item to ensure the right numbers. Warehouse automation can do this for you. You no longer need to carry a clipboard and a pen around to check that certain items are correct. Warehouse automation will take care of it and provide receipts.
Less workplace injuries
It is not always easy to reach every item when trying to pack as many items as possible. Warehouse managers no longer have to worry about injury in their warehouses because robots do all the heavy lifting. The robots won’t require employees to climb ladders and worry about hard-to reach items.
Automation in warehouses has many advantages. Your company could benefit from automation. Knowing the top types of automation and the most desired benefits you can now determine the best system for your warehouse.