If you’re selling products, supply chain management, or order fulfilment, you’ve probably considered how automation can revolutionize your work. With the disruptions caused by the COVID-19 pandemic, you may be considering warehouse automation to tackle worker shortages and improve efficiency in your operations.
It’s a great time to explore warehouse automation because many experts view it as the future of warehousing and logistics. Here are five key points to consider when considering warehouse automation for your business strategy.
5 Things About Warehouse Automation
#1 What is warehouse automation?
Warehouse automation involves utilizing robotics and various technology solutions to streamline inventory movement within the warehouse, reducing the need for human intervention. This process can vary in terms of its level and type of automation. For instance, scanning devices and software can replace manual inventory recording, while robots can transport inventory within different warehouse areas.
#2 Global warehouse automation statistics
- The global warehouse automation market is expected to reach $30 billion by 2026, growing at a CAGR of 11.6% from 2021 to 2026. (Source: MarketsandMarkets)
- The global warehouse robotics market size is projected to grow from $4.7 billion in 2021 to $9.2 billion by 2026, at a CAGR of 14.1% during the forecast period. (Source: MarketsandMarkets)
- Automated material handlings equipment, such as conveyor systems, automated storage and retrieval systems (AS/RS), and automated guided vehicles (AGVs), accounted for over 50% of the global warehouse automation market share in 2020. (Source: Grand View Research)
- The adoption of warehouse automation technology is driven by the need to improve supply chain efficiency and reduce labor costs. (Source: MHI Industry Report)
- According to a survey by Zebra Technologies, 58% of warehouses are expected to be fully automated by 2025, up from 28% in 2020. (Source: Zebra Technologies)
- Warehouse automation can increase productivity by up to 800%, reduce labor costs by up to 70%, and reduce errors by up to 99%. (Source: MHI Industry Report)
- The use of autonomous mobile robots (AMRs) in warehouses is growing rapidly, with the global AMR market size projected to reach $6.8 billion by 2025, growing at a CAGR of 23.8% from 2020 to 2025. (Source: MarketsandMarkets)
#3 How can automation improve warehouse efficiency?
#1 Improved inventory management: Automation can help warehouses keep track of inventory levels in real-time, reducing the risk of stockouts and overstocking. This can help warehouses optimize their inventory levels and reduce waste.
#2 Faster order processing: Automation can speed up the order fulfillment process by automating tasks such as picking and packing. This can reduce the time it takes to fulfill orders and improve order accuracy.
#3 Increased productivity: Automation can free workers from repetitive tasks, allowing them to focus on higher-value tasks. This can increase productivity and reduce labor costs.
#4 Better space utilization: Automation can help warehouses optimize their use of space by reducing the need for aisles and maximizing vertical storage. This can increase storage capacity without the need for additional warehouse space.
#5 Improved safety: Automation can help reduce the risk of workplace accidents by automating dangerous or repetitive tasks. This can help create a safer work environment for employees.
#6 Enhanced data collection and analysis: Automation can provide warehouses with real-time data on inventory levels, order processing times, and other key metrics. This can help warehouses make data-driven decisions to improve efficiency and reduce costs. Regenerate response.
#3 Benefits of warehouse automation
Inefficient warehouses can have negative impacts on customer experience and business results. However, utilizing automation to enhance warehouse operations can benefit organizations.
- Lower labor costs
- Optimal use of resources
- Increased productivity and efficiency
- Better resource allocation
- Reduced storage and handling expenses
- Fewer errors in shipping and handling
- Decreased stockout occurrences
- Lower rates of employee accidents
- Enhanced employee satisfaction
- Improved use of available warehouse space
- Better inventory management
- Higher rates of customer satisfaction
#4 Different Types of Warehouse Automation
Automated Storage and Retrieval Systems (AS/RS): These systems use robots or automated cranes to move products within a warehouse. AS/RS can improve warehouse efficiency by maximizing vertical space and reducing the need for human intervention.
Conveyor Systems: Conveyor systems are automated systems that move products along a fixed path. These systems can help speed up order processing and reduce the need for manual handling.
Robotics: Robots can be used to perform various tasks in a warehouse, including picking and packing. Robots can help reduce labor costs and improve order accuracy. Automated
Guided Vehicles (AGVs): AGVs are mobile robots that can move products around a warehouse without human intervention. These systems can help reduce labor costs and improve warehouse efficiency.
Warehouse Control Systems (WCS): WCS is software that helps manage and control automated systems in a warehouse. These systems can help optimize warehouse operations and reduce errors.
Automated Picking Systems: Automated picking systems use technology such as barcode scanners and voice picking to automate the picking process. These systems can help reduce labor costs and improve order accuracy.
Automatic Identification and Data Capture (AIDC): AIDC systems use barcode scanning and RFID technology to track inventory and improve warehouse efficiency.
#5 Ways to implement warehouse automation
Warehouse automation software are the best option to automate your business as it has a set process.
Receiving: Using mobile devices, businesses can efficiently capture data on incoming products and process it using integrated software.
Sorting: Automated systems that ensure quality control and inventory accuracy can improve sorting and storage.
Putaway: Automating putaway can help reduce errors and facilitate cross-docking, while picking can be made more efficient through mobile and voice solutions.
Packaging: Automating packaging can ensure labeling accuracy and promote appropriate packaging materials, leading to cost savings and environmental benefits.
Shipping: Shipping can be improved by integrating automated scales, conveyors, and printers with the warehouse management system to choose the best shipping carrier, print labels, and schedule shipments.
Tracking: Automated inventory tracking systems can help replenish by triggering order requests when inventory levels reach a certain threshold.
Return: Automating aspects of the reverse logistics process can help track returns, ensure customer satisfaction, and maximize returned products’ value.
On a concluding note!
Warehouse automation can deliver various benefits to the distribution chain, including speed, efficiency, safety, and cost savings. By clearly understanding these solutions and how they can help your business, you can make informed decisions that yield positive short- and long-term outcomes.