Technology has become an influential part of our everyday lives. When you think about it, living without a smartphone, connected devices, and various gadgets would be challenging on a personal level. The same sentiment holds true in the warehousing and logistics industry.
While a largely traditional industry, warehouses have been under tremendous pressure in recent years to adapt to fast-changing market conditions. More people than ever are shopping online, and the pandemic revealed many supply chain weaknesses that technology could address. Here’s why technology has become so important in the warehouse and a list of technology solutions that can help your business improve efficiency.
eCommerce sales have exploded over the past several years, partly due to the pandemic. As more consumers have turned to online sources for their purchases, this places an unprecedented strain on warehouses and logistics providers.
At the same time, the pandemic was a catalyst for a host of supply chain challenges that seemed to be lurking under the surface. Examples include material shortages, congestion at critical ports, lack of supply chain visibility, worker shortages, and demand forecasting complexity. Fortunately, various technology solutions can help address these and improve efficiency in the warehouse.
Efficiency is crucial to a healthy warehouse operation. Whether you need smoother warehouse floor operations or better demand flexibility, these technologies can improve efficiency to grow your business.
Any warehouse technology you implement should have a robust warehouse management system as its foundation. This is a robust system that can manage and drive every aspect of your warehouse’s operation, making them more efficient and productive. Some key features of these systems include:
In most warehouses, the average employee makes dozens of trips daily back and forth to a centralized area to print picking instructions or packing labels or to enter data into a computer. This is cumbersome work that can lead to human error and injuries, thanks to fatigue.
Mobile warehouse technology gives workers instant access to those same systems from any place in the warehouse. Some mobile warehouse technologies that increase efficiency include:
The Internet of Things (IoT) is a broad concept that refers to using connected devices to achieve greater convenience and efficiency. We use IoT at home with smart thermostats and appliances. So why not leverage the same technology in the warehouse?
IoT-enable devices can help your warehouse avoid errors and reduce accidents in a variety of ways:
If you want to improve efficiency, boost productivity, and address your ongoing labor issues, automation and robotics is the ideal solution. And the possibilities are nearly endless. Sure, you can spend a ton to create a lights-out warehouse. But this isn’t necessary. You can get your work done faster, smarter, and cheaper by employing a variety of automation solutions.
Warehouse technologies can directly impact warehouse efficiency, which is a critical strategic goal for just about every business in this industry. When your warehouse’s operations run efficiently, the business will be more productive, have fewer errors, and deliver a better customer experience.