Gone are the days where an order is written down on paper, sent to the warehouse, and picked according to the line item on the sheet.
Nowadays, fulfillment centers need to have the ability to accurately and quickly pick, pack, and ship anywhere from 5-5,000 orders per day. However, some believe that automation is too expensive or just elusive, causing them to miss out on a great opportunity to improve and grow their business. In the E-commerce world today, automation is a must to compete in today’s omnichannel market.
Automated Warehousing Benefits
Automated warehousing can provide a wide spectrum of benefits ranging from space savings and improved productivity to reductions in inventory, reduced operational costs, and better ROI. The search for cost savings opportunities in e-commerce fulfillment typically focuses on the activities that utilize the most labor. In most cases, that activity is order picking. Automation such as unit sortation and shuttle systems are analyzed to determine if the cost of the equipment justifies the labor savings which ultimately results in a lower cost per unit processed. Often times, the search for additional cost savings stops at the picking process while order packing continues to be a manual and labor-intensive process.
The amount of labor savings is mainly dependent on the productivity rate of the manual pack process versus the rate that an order can be inducted onto the infeed belt. The annual volume of packages shipped will also have an impact on the savings but to a lesser degree.
Employing a Successful Automation System
There is an infinite number of ways for consumers to purchase products nowadays; on a retailer’s website, on Amazon or eBay, in-store, phone orders, catalog purchases, etc.–the omnichannel. This makes it difficult to have a single system made to measure your needs. Since no two e-commerce operations are the same, you need the right combination of software and equipment to make decisions at the speed of automation.
Employing a successful automation system to streamline your entire business processes should be something that your fulfillment center already has or is working on. AHS is heavily invested in ensuring that our client’s fulfillment centers are automated to meet their needs. If you have any questions or would like to learn more, contact our material handling experts at AHS, LLC for help! Call us at 800-891-5504 or email us today at firstname.lastname@example.org.