7 Benefits of Implementing an Automated Warehouse Picking System
Updated on August 23, 2021 | by Evan Chase
Every facility wants to maximize its productivity without sacrificing too much, which is why an automated warehouse picking system is the best solution if it fits the needs of your operation. The system allows you to fulfill orders with more accuracy and less time by collaborating with its human counterparts.
What is an Automated Warehouse Picking System?
Automated picking works by collaborating with its human counterparts to make the most out of your workforce. The computerized robots boost fulfillment processes by swiftly moving around the facility, reducing the picking time by 2-3 times. Collaborative picking technology uses directed workflow to pace your employees and help them move through the picking process quickly. To sum it up, picking automation is similar to traditional picking, except it eliminates human error, wasted time, and inefficient order tracking.
What Are the Benefits of Implementing an Automated Warehouse Picking System?
As mentioned before, implementing an automated warehouse picking system is the easiest way to improve your operation. SRSI team can help you to implement an automated warehouse picking system in your warehouse quickly. Since you will eliminate manual practices that tend to slow down your workflow, you will be able to fulfill orders faster than ever.
The other benefits of automated picking include:
Decreasing Pick Times
Manual picking requires your workers to walk across the warehouse multiple times. When you implement automated picking, you will effectively mitigate time spent walking and searching for orders, which will double your throughput. The system achieves this by grouping orders together with similar items. They are then picked and sent to a compact workstation to be sorted into their corresponding orders, allowing your facility to improve its productivity levels and completed orders significantly.
Easy to Learn
Many managers are hesitant to change their current practices because they’re afraid of the learning curve of a new system. However, an automated picking system is surprisingly easy to learn, allowing you to fully integrate it into your operation in no time. An ASRS system can literally be learned in minutes, meaning that your pickers won’t have to extensively train before beginning to use your new technological tool.
A priceless advantage of warehouse automated picking is that it significantly improves your facility’s safety levels. When you run a safe operation, your employees are less likely to be the victim of an on-site injury, resulting in unexpected legal fees and a loss of productivity. Automated robots meet OSHA standards and rely on sensor technology, meaning that they have high stop accuracy and can swiftly avoid laborers and equipment. Plus, since ASRS robots can move without an operator, they pave the way for a hands-free picking environment which will significantly reduce injuries.
Save Warehouse Space
Older versions of picking systems are bulky, taking up a large chunk of your facility’s floor, and you cannot quickly move them to a different location. When you switch to technology-driven picking, you will reduce wasted space from shelving and utilize vertical space because ASRS allows for more compact storage. To achieve this, the system uses high-density bins, dividers, totes, and drawers to maximize organization. With the increased floor space, you can accommodate additional inventory, expand your operations, or even sublease your warehouse for additional revenue.
No one wants to invest in a new system and wait forever to use it. One of the great things about an automated warehouse picking system is that you don’t have to add new infrastructure to begin using it. As a matter of fact, most operations can start using their latest technology 2-6 weeks after installing it. Compared to other automation tools, ASRS has a significantly lower waiting period meaning that integrating it won’t affect your productivity levels as much.
Traditional automation solutions are prone to having issues, meaning that you have to stop using them and wait for them to be repaired, wasting valuable time. Additionally, a single traditional automation equipment issue could shut down your whole operation since each machine is necessary to the fulfillment process. With collaborative mobile picking systems, when one robot goes down, it does not significantly impact your throughput because other robots can fill in for the one that needs repairs.
Adapts to Your Existing WMS/WES
An automated warehouse picking system will adapt to your physical infrastructure as well as your technology-based infrastructure. ASRS does not require any IT reboots or overhauls, meaning that you can simply integrate it with your current WMS or WES. The benefits of this are that you do not need to learn entirely new software, and you can begin using your system in no time.
What to Consider When Implementing Warehouse Automated Picking
Like any technological solution, there are a few downsides that you should take into consideration before investing in picking automation. A few of the most important cons of technology-based picking systems include a high initial investment, decreased company morale, and a lack of adaptive thinking that humans possess. When you consider these weak points, switching to an automatic picking system seems like the clear answer. It offers many benefits with few cons, allowing your warehouse to max success and profits.