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Tags: , , Published On: 2021-11-03Last Updated: 2021-11-26

2021-11-03

Online Fulfillment Center

Online Fulfillment Center

Industry

Logistics

Location

Icheon, Korea

Company

This Fulfillment center is a giant warehouse of about 6,660 m2, picking, sorting, and packing more than 4,000 shipments B2B and B2C daily. The majority of orders processed are B2C orders originating from online shopping malls, with fashion products being the most popular: to cope with the demand, the center stores about 40,000 kinds of garments, and totalling more than 600,000 products.

Challenge

While single-item orders are fairly simply processed, the real challenge lies in finding an efficient way to deal with multiple-item orders: B2C orders almost always include vastly different items within each order, reducing efficiency and increasing the risk of mistakes. The average person is only able to process 80-100 orders per day. This, combined with the fact that each product needs to be scanned one by one to know where to be put before packing, makes sorting not only the most time-consuming activity in the logistics center ㅡ representing 60% of total activity ㅡ but also represents a waste of space and thus loss of productivity for the warehouse.

Solution

The old system meant a relatively substantial initial investment, had a limit on the number of orders it could cope with, and updates about which shipments needed to be processed were not instantaneous. This particular logistics center developed an innovative Put-to-Light system using InforTab Plus. With the Put-to-Light system, the InforTab Plus’ display shows operators the space where to put the products for each order. Each product is assigned a number and/or color. Upon scanning a product, all locations where to put it as well as quantity required will show on InforTab Plus, allowing operators to quickly sort orders instead of having to memorise each order’s demanded products and quantity and putting them one by one where they are required. Then, they touch the display to indicate they are done, allowing the system to prepare for the next order. The company first experimented with the solution for 6 months before fully adopting the system, with the Put-to-Light system integrating 45 InforTab Plus.

Result

Sorting time has been reduced to 40% of total activity, increasing picking time and packing time. In other words, the logistics center can now process a higher amount of orders, and utilise space more efficiently than before. Productivity has increased with each operator now being able to deal with about 200 to 300 orders per day. On average, for 1,000 shipments sent, processing time has been cut by half, which is largely due to the fact that it has now become possible to sort not one but several kinds of products at once. The easy learning curve also means quick adaptation and lower stress levels throughout. In a managing point of view, the new system resulted in lower initial costs at same volume, as well as scaling potential ㅡ The more InforTab Plus installed, the more productivity gained. Positive initial results have encouraged other logistics centers in the area to pilot-test this solution, showing the need for change.

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