The case of Amazon is famous; they have managed to streamline their processes by introducing robots in the warehouse. When you are ordering an item from Amazon, you receive an automated message to inform you about the status of the shipment.
In no more than 48 hours, the package arrives at your house. Because they are using robots in their warehouses, Amazon is able to deliver you the product in a short period of time. But Amazon is not the only retailer that uses robots to enhance the effectiveness of their processes, more and more companies that have to run a warehouse, have at least considered the option to use them.
Warehouse automation technologies have reached a new level of performance in the last years, and they guarantee that they will change the entire process of order fulfilment. They are already playing a vital role in the process, but as the technology will become more sophisticated, they will be able to complete more tasks.
The distribution centres that do not use robots and automated technology in their processes find quite difficult to handle large volumes of work. The demands of the market are constantly changing in complexity, and the only solution companies can find is to introduce robots in their warehouse operations.
With the guidance of a robots provider, logistic companies can include automated technology in the warehouse. Autonomous robots bring significant improvements in the accuracy of the orders, without having to complete steps that would only waste time. The robot will calculate the most efficient route to complete the task effectively and accurately.
Logistics firms know that order errors like miss-packs or miss-picks are the main factors that lead to diminished profitability. It is essential to elevate the accuracy of the orders, especially for start-up companies, because they can face daunting costs because of the lost sales and low rates of customer satisfaction. Automated technologies can increase the precision of picking the packages and facility organisation.
Forklifts are other devices that have started to become more intelligent and complex with the help of automation. Forklifts are vital when running a warehouse, because they control load-handling processes, and complete repetitive and long distance operations. Some forklifts come with a navigation laser, a 3D camera, front and rear scanners, and acoustic warning indicators that allow them to move safely around the warehouse. They can easily detect obstacles and they have no issues in moving around human workers. These machines are useful for transporting trailers and palettes on long and short distances. They can be used together with manually operated forklifts to enhance the performance of certain actions.
When considering the integration of robots in a company’s operations, it always comes the question of how the human workers will react, and how the team will be influenced by this decision. In the majority of cases, the introduction of robotic automation processes leads to feelings of anxiety, the workers are worried that they will lose their jobs. But, this problem can easily be solved, with the help of a pilot program, that shows employees how the new devices will allow them to continue to do their job, only that they will do it easier. Robots offer employees a sense of empowerment when they learn how to use them and when they understand that they are tools meant to help them do their jobs better.
Human workers still are essential for warehouses, because many manufacturing and logistics operations can be completed only if employees do certain tasks. Robots come in their help and eliminate unnecessary walking; therefore, the employees have more time to focus on their tasks.
Devices like industrial robot arm have registered new improvements, nowadays they come with artificial intelligence and sensors that allow them to be used virtually in any warehouse or factory. Nowadays robot arms are used to offer picking solutions and to add a new level of efficiency to the operations. These devices can be programmed to move products between stations and workers. The employees do not have to move to reach the picking area, and get the good they need to work on; the robotic arm will do it for them. If the robot eliminates half of the time of an operation it is worth its investment.
The latest equipment on the market offers new possibilities for monitoring the state of the inventory. When combined with other robots, they can conduct the inventory without the intervention of a human worker. At a determined period, they complete the inventory. Some warehouses do the inventory every three months, while others need to do it every two hours to have access to a real-time situation. The layout decisions and storage strategies are made according to the inventory, and a robot is the best option for offering an accurate image.
Logistics companies have a single question before introducing robots in their supply chain. What this change will mean for their company? They are acting on a market where the clients expect their products to be shipped fast and free. The best way to meet the request of the market is to install a goods-to-person picking system, because it reduces the time of completing fulfilment operations. These systems are very flexible and they can help the human workers deal with the change and fluctuation of inventory that happen very rapidly.
Depending on the type of products a company is delivering, robots and other types of devices can have a vital role in reducing the effect of labour shortage and labour costs. Automated technology and artificial intelligence have a major impact on all operations from packing, to sortation and picking. From autonomous robots to robotic arms, they all have a vital role in the modern logistics industry. Determine what solutions would work better for you, and integrate them in your chain of supply.