6 Factors to Evaluate Voice Directed Picking Solutions

Posted by on Jul 6, 2016 3:13:34 PM


Zebra launches a total wearable solution for warehouse professionals. As warehouses become more complex technology solutions must integrate many different software and hardware components to enable employees to increase productivity.

For many wearables are a new and emerging technology, yet commercial sales of wearable devices are expected to exceed 110 million units in 2016. That's up from 72 million in 2015, wearables are a growing technology with projections to double by 2020.

According to Zebra in a test group of 1000 logistics professionals around the world, 2/3 intend to adopt voice directed picking solutions in their businesses by the end of the decade. Hands free computing is fueling the warehouse need for increased productivity with fewer errors. Zebra's total wearable solution provides massive gains in productivity and accuracy by liberating workers' hands and eyes. 

Voice directed picking application allow the worker to focus on the work rather than the device, voice directed picking solutions result in an increase of 15% faster with 39% less errors. 

Voiced Directed Picking Solution Benefits Comparison

Multi-mode vs. Voice-only speech-directed solutions

A comparison of voice-only and multi-modal speech-directed solutions reveals incremental benefits for nearly all aspects of the picking process.

1. Total Order Completion Times

Compared to voice-only solutions, multi-modal system users spent:

• 14.0% less total walking time to complete an order

• 18.1% less time picking all items in an order

• 15.4% less time overall fulfilling an order

2. Average Pick Time Per Item

Multi-modal system users pick items an average of 16.7% faster than voice-only users.

3. Repeat Requests

Voice-only system users were forced to repeat information 38.1% more than multi-modal system users.

4. Error Rates

The error rate of the voice-only systems is 63% higher than multi-modal systems.

5. User System Preference 

Participants prefer multi-modal to voice-only systems for: 

  • Overall system performance
  • Mental effort
  • Frustration level
  • Clarity of instructions
  • Easy to learn

6. Display Use

Participants found information on the display very helpful. All users utilized the display multiple times during the picking of an order — and some referred to the screen with every item pick.

In summary, while voice-only speech-directed solutions deliver strong 15% to 30% productivity increases in order picking, multi-modal speech-directed solutions allow enterprises to achieve an additional 15.4% in incremental productivity over voice-only solutions — each worker can now process more orders per day, boosting throughput without hiring additional staff. When it comes to user preference, participants preferred multi-modal over voice-only speech-directed solutions for five key reasons:

  1. Overall system performance
  2. Mental effort
  3. Frustration level
  4. Clarity of instructions
  5. Easy to learn

And when presented with the option to view information on the screen as well as hear spoken information, every participant chose to engage with information on screen during every order fulfilled, demonstrating the value of presenting information in multiple formats that allow workers to choose what helps make them the most productive.

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Topics: Warehouse Managment

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