Subscribe to our free, weekly email newsletter!


Wearable scanners reduce labor expenses

Hands-free, paperless system improves productivity and cuts product cycle time.
By Josh Bond, Associate Editor
October 02, 2012

A food and beverage company needed to expand its distribution capacity within two existing facilities where rapidly growing retail sales had created a 75% increase in daily order volume. Though order accuracy was already at 99.5%, the manufacturer was seeking opportunities to cut costs and increase order accuracy to more than 99.8%. Using wearable scanners, the customer saved money and achieved accuracy above 99.9%.

One of the facilities—in the Southeast United States—is an 110,000-square-foot distribution center with 110 employees. The other is a 33,000-square-foot DC in Southern California with 30 employees. Combined, they ship approximately 210,000 orders, 1.5 million lines, and 500 SKUs monthly. The facilities use a 3PL-provided proprietary warehouse management system (WMS) designed for multi-client facilities.

The system was modified to allow product pickers to use new wrist-mounted terminals with ring scanners to improve picking efficiency and order accuracy. Wearable scanners are a great addition to the pick line because the staff needed the ability to have full hands-free mobility. These scanners are particularly well suited to small case or each-pick lines in a dense, high-SKU, high-volume pick area.

The new system and equipment changes generated labor cost savings. The changes also improved the processes on the floor—reducing the printing of manual pick sheets, manual checking of order lines, and double QC functions. The improvements allowed an 80% reduction in labor in quality control alone.

The productivity of the line also improved with the automation, and orders can now be completed in significantly reduced time. This time reduction allowed the facility to handle growing order volume without adding labor to the pick lines. And, order accuracy improved to 99.9%.

Kenco
800-758-3289
http://www.kencogroup.com

Read more Casebook 2013.

About the Author

image
Josh Bond
Associate Editor

Josh Bond is an associate editor to Modern. Josh was formerly Modern’s lift truck columnist and contributing editor, has a degree in Journalism from Keene State College and has studied business management at Franklin Pierce.


Subscribe to Modern Materials Handling magazine

Subscribe today. It's FREE!
Find out what the world’s most innovative companies are doing to improve productivity in their plants and distribution centers.
Start your FREE subscription today!

Recent Entries

The acquisition encompasses loose fill manufacturing and distribution, as well as several other redistribution products, including bubble wrap, bubble-lined mailers and rolled foam.

Akro-Mils’ donation to Habitat for Humanity included plastic storage bins and containers, portable organizers, storage cases, plastic and steel storage cabinets, and louvered bench racks.

PMMI to honor Class of 2014 at PACK EXPO International in reception benefiting industry education

Join Associate Editor Josh Bond and lift truck industry training expert, Jim Shephard share all the findings of Modern's annual Lift Truck User Survey. During this webcast, you'll receive detailed insights into users' practices around procuring, utilizing and maintaining their fleets.

Having grown from a local tool and die business established in 1962, company becomes 20th certified robot integrator.



© Copyright 2013 Peerless Media LLC, a division of EH Publishing, Inc • 111 Speen Street, Ste 200, Framingham, MA 01701 USA