Nearly half a century ago, barcodes were the revolutionary solution promising to bring massive improvements to the supply chain. And they did. But supply chains weren't nearly as complex as they are today, with online orders, multi-location warehouses, and the expectation of fast and error-free delivery.
When voice technology was first introduced with the launch of Siri more than a decade ago, few people could have anticipated how this novel feature would become such a driver for innovation. Today, more than a quarter of U.S. adults own a smart speaker (Amazon Echo, Google Home, etc.), and eMarketer predicts that roughly 92 percent of smartphone users will be using voice assistants within the next year.
RFID is an incredibly versatile technology, with applications from one end of the supply chain to the other. Short for Radio Frequency Identification (RFID), these tags and readers save and transmit data through radio waves about an item, such as a product #, expiration date, manufacture date, temperature, and more.
Automation offers a wide range of benefits for warehouses, from better supply chain visibility to boosting productivity and efficiency to reducing labor-related hazards and risks. But implementing automation takes some effort and resources, so many businesses have put off this important transition for as long as possible. For those that still haven’t made the switch, here is why now may be the right time to automate your warehouse.
When people think of warehouse automation, they picture a futuristic operation where robots do all the work and humans are left either with nothing to do or trying to save the world from evil machines. Neither vision could be further from reality.
Warehouse work can be complicated. From tracking inventory to managing returns, the number of details to work around might feel overwhelming. Whether you oversee materials handling or order fulfillment, you may have considered the ways that automating your business’s processes could streamline your overall performance. It’s no exaggeration to say that technology is reshaping almost every industry in modern America, and over the last few years, the rise of automation has radically reshaped the way warehouses sort, store, and move stock.
As we get ready to welcome a new year, it’s time to take a look at new strategies and ideas to enhance your warehouse productivity and efficiency. It’s a given that warehouse management plays a vital role in the supply chain, but businesses often overlook simple solutions that can help them stay ahead of the game.
If you sell products, work in materials handling, a supply chain industry, or order fulfillment, there’s a solid chance that you’ve given some thought to the ways that automation can transform the nature of your work. Considering the disruption caused by the COVID-19 pandemic, you may be ready to make some changes with respect to warehouse automation to address worker shortages and efficiency issues in your operations.
Many of us are just getting used to asking our smartphones for directions or coming to terms with Alexa being a fixture in the home. Voice recognition technology has been around for several decades and is making people’s lives easier and more enjoyable. But, what about in the workplace? And, particularly, in the warehouse environment?
Believe it or not, voice technology has been a fixture in some warehouses for about two decades. But, similar to those flip phones, what was considered high-tech voice technology in the 90s looks much different today. Here are some of the ways voice technology can benefit your warehouse and a list of the ways you can apply it to your operations.
2020, for all its faults, is the year that almost every company and business “decided” to finally jump into Ecommerce. This includes not only selling online directly to end users, but the various means of getting the product into their hands including in-store fulfillment. While Retailers’ online sites in 2018 totaled sales over $400 billion, they will far exceed that in 2020 and are expected to grow to over $700 billion in 2020, with some of the fastest growth coming in food and beverage (23.4% - 58.5%) and health and beauty increasing from 16.6% to 32.4%. (source: eMarketer.com). That pace along with the expected drop in total brick-and-mortar sales means Ecommerce will make up over 14% of total retail sales in 2020.