As e-commerce represents an ever-increasing percentage of orders within distribution and fulfillment centers, warehouse managers evaluate automation solutions to combat the increased operational costs associated with e-commerce orders. In a warehouse or fulfillment center designed for traditional pallet storage and picking, those orders being fulfilled through each or case picking can add up and get expensive.
Currently, many of the operations we have worked with have responded to the additional e-commerce orders by “throwing labor” at this issue. What happens during peak seasons? Do you throw even more labor at it? What about if there are changes in ordering patterns? Do you hire and train temporary workers? That is where automation can come in and deliver solutions for these challenges.
However, it can be challenging to decide the appropriate level of automation for your current operations. It can be even more challenging to determine the proper level for you in 3 to 5 years. Do you integrate more now and deal with the cost today or slowly build a system and integrate it into your operations?
We created our EASY Automation Appraisals, where our team can take a data-driven, engineered solutions approach to determine the best plan of action for your facility. After all, each operation is different, and we want to connect you with the appropriate set of solutions, never to oversell or stick you with a system that you cannot fully optimize.
So, if you are at that stage where costs are rising due to an increase in each or case picking compared to your rate of pallet picking, your operation may be an ideal candidate for an EASY Appraisal. But what all is needed to conduct one within your facility?
- Order Line Data – The most critical data for us.
- Inventory On Hand – Historical data showing what all are you storing & how much of each item?
- AutoCAD Layout of the Facility – We want to know where everything is at, as it stands today.
- SKU Item Master List – We want to know what size your products are, how big their cases are, and what size pallets or cases are currently being stored?
- Labor Rates & Outlay – How much are you trying to process, and how much does it cost to do it?
- Outbound Shipping Requirements – Do you need poly bags? Does your packaging require dunnage?
Not all that information is technically needed – we have enough experience to work around virtually any roadblock – but having all that information will give us a clear understanding of what to look for in your operations. From there, our engineering team can tour your facility and see your processes in action ourselves. You can learn more about our EASY Appraisals here.
Are You Ready for an EASY Automation Appraisal?
The changes associated with fulfilling e-commerce orders are going to affect the structure of your business. It is a question of “when,” not “if.” If you are unsure how to adapt to those changes or adopt best practices with these systems, that is where we come in. These appraisals are designed to fit your needs now with a growth plan. We also offer a business case for how these additions can deliver an ROI within a few months or years.
Give us a call today to share more about the specific challenges you see in your operations and allow our team to develop custom engineered solutions that can help you combat those rising labor costs while increasing throughput and order accuracy.
Contact us today to schedule your EASY Automation Appraisal!