More efficient orders processing and more operations per hour
Warehouse logistics is an ecosystem of solutions and tools, coexisting and working together to achieve common goals, including efficient storage and orders preparation. Technological evolution has made logistics a key component, thanks to different systems, able to speed up goods management and orders preparation, improve working conditions, reduce errors and increase productivity.
These efforts for more efficient warehousing operations certainly involve warehousing staff: warehouse operators are no longer unskilled workers, but coordinators of sophisticated, easy-to-manage and innovative systems designed to make their work easier.
In the complex warehousing world we can distinguish
Storage solutions, ie. the actual structures where the goods are stored, such as automatic vertical and horizontal storage systems;
In this article, we will explore picking solutions and analyze their impact on warehousing logistics.
The Put to Light System and the elements optimizing its functionalities
The Put to light system is an orders preparation solution, designed to achieve efficiency in the management of logistics bases, items and boxes picking and orders assembling, preparing for expedition. The Put to light system can use two elements, improving its functionality. They are designed to work in a synchronized way to further improve warehouse logistics processes: picking carts and picking stations.
Let's start from the core of the Put to light system - the perfect solution for faster, practical and intuitive orders preparation and fulfillment.
Software integration with WMS systems
Put to light is part of the outgoing internal logistics flow and it is an essential aid when sorting different goods, items and SKUs. In fact, in the system of Put to light displays, located on racking systems or near different roller conveyors, guides the operator in the warehouse to specific areas where the products and items shoul be placed, forming an order or shipment. Each specific item is dynamically linked to a specific order and combined with an illuminated display, showing the operator where to place the item(s) and in what quantity.
By implementing a special WMS (Warehouse Management Software) it is possible to manage different picking processes, such as batch picking (same item to be distributed in different orders) or multiple orders simultaneous picking (simultaneous preparation of multiple orders, without batches selection). The Put to light system can be applied to both Automated Storage Systems and traditional storage structures, such as static racks.
After the introduction of the Put to Light system, it is time to explain in more detail the additional improvements, possible thanks to two critical elements, supporting the Put to light systems, namely - picking stations and picking carts.
The picking station can be considered as the infrastructure or hardware of the Put to light system. This is an intermediate storage point, consisting of a stable steel structure, equipped with multiple compartments for containers, where goods and items are placed, ready for packaging or expedition. Each compartment is connected to a display with its own controllers and power supply unit. The picking station can be used in combination with manual or Automatic Systems, such as Belt Conveyor Systems, for example.
Picking stations are modular solutions. It means that they can be located next to each other in order to expand the working area - with workhouse operators on one or both sides. This can be very useful when it is necessary to process multiple orders simultaneously. The basic structure of the picking station can be customized with additional modules - monitors, barcode readers, label printers or other accessories.
- Picking carts
The picking cart is a steel structure equipped with 4 rotating wheels, designed for extremely flexible maneuvers. It has compartments for containers, illuminated displays with control units, power and backup batteries and wireless WiFi systems. The picking cart can be moved manually by a warehouse operator or by autonomous mobile robots. It can be used with Vertical or Horizontal Automatic Storage Systems, as well as with "traditional" Storage Systems based on static racks. Picking carts facilitate and speed up the processing of goods throughout the warehouse.
Picking carts and trolleys can be managed, using specific smartphone and mobile applications, able to track orders processing operations in the warehouse, the logistics or distribution center.
The advantages of picking solutions in warehouse logistics
All these new picking tools are aimed to improve safety and efficiency of warehouse operators. The Put to light system, picking stations and picking carts are 3 complementary elements, working in a synchronized way to improve productivity - an extremely important factor for many sectors such as distribution and eCommerce. Some of the main goals of these accelerated picking solutions include:
- Improving velocity (for example, the number of picking operations per minute) and therefore obtaining savings in terms of processing time;
- Improving accuracy and significantly reducing errors (which may occur in the case of manual processing);
- Minimizing the impact of reverse logistics;
- Implement high-performance picking aids that require limited maintenance and upgrades to always ensure maximum efficiency.
Do you need to speed up picking operations in your distribution center? Check out the video content and do not hesitate to contact us!