Warehouse Digitalization: The Warehouse of Tomorrow

March 18, 2021
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The Digi-Smart manufacturing process empowers enterprises to gain control of their warehouses and ensures that products can be delivered to customers as quickly as possible. Warehouse digitalization is the most critical change to not just warehouse operations but achieves the efficiency levels needed for an intelligent and automated warehouse.

Warehouses are changing: While the retail industry is yet to reap the benefits of digital technology, the eCommerce landscape has pushed us into a state, where we have to design our warehousing strategies with a focus on actual warehousing. This wave of change has made warehouses smarter and more agile. Although there’s still a long way to go till we overhaul our warehouse operations with technology, there’s no doubt that today eCommerce has given businesses a renewed impetus towards exploring digital disruption – both in terms of consumer experiences and supply chain processes.

Warehouse Digitalization: Warehouse digitalization basically refers to an intelligent, efficient, and automated warehouse that makes the best possible use of both people and equipment. It includes optimally deploying millimetre wave technology to capture, transport, and rearrange goods, as well as applying other high-tech tools to facilitate logistics processes.

Warehousing is a key element of supply chain management that can push enterprises towards digital transformation. Some experts say that within five years high-performance warehouses will be fully autonomous. According to The Statista Research Department, by 2025, the global market for IoT (Internet of Things) will achieve a growth of around 1.6 trillion.

The concept of warehouse digitalization is moving from being a hot topic into reality. Advanced, new technologies are being used to address warehouses’ operational challenges and improve productivity. Many concepts are already underway in the market, including robotic processes, intelligent material handling, data-driven decision making, and labour optimization.

Let’s look at the warehouse digitalization trend from three perspectives –

1. How Warehouse Mobility Solutions helps increase productivity:

Innovation in warehousing continues to flourish. Hence, warehouse automation technologies are emerging and enabling warehouse operators to address challenges through real-time data. The logistics industry is beginning to take advantage of the Internet of Things (IoT), artificial intelligence (AI), robotics, and data analytics.

  • With the increasing challenges of traditional logistics processes, companies are looking to manage and conquer the challenges through new technology. Discover how Warehouse Mobility Solutions can help you Accelerate with Mobility.
  • Warehouse mobility solutions are great to help your worker friend move faster and with a lot more ease. They are a real game-changer, as they help you gather more data than you could ever get with manual entry. Also, the results of warehouse mobility solutions are instant.
  • The advantages of functionalities such as imaging (pictures & video), cloud integration, tracking, voice/face recognition, video-conferencing, and even personal assistants open new frontiers for warehouse transformations.

2. How Autonomous Guided Vehicles help reduce costs:

Warehouse operators strive to gain a competitive advantage by employing advanced technology such as Autonomous Guided Vehicles, drones etc.

  • As a solution for the rising costs of eCommerce warehouses and its subsequent pressure on the industry, autonomous guided vehicles are developed using robotic vehicle solutions that help transform human movement analytics into precision driving data in order to facilitate real-time business decisions.
  • It helps improve the productivity and efficiency of the warehouse workforce. As a result, warehouse owners can cut labour costs and time spent on manual operations, while still fulfilling the high-volume demands of eCommerce orders.
  • Drones can be used for a number of activities in warehousing operations. Warehouse personnel mostly need to carry out missions which sometimes are extremely dull and laborious.
  • They need to locate particular items with a great degree of precision, and this is where drones can make their lives easier.
  • They are as safe as they are economical in terms of conducting inventory, locating cargo, cycle counting, and even performing stock-taking operations.
  • Equipped with sensors, cameras, barcode scanners etc., a drone can reach even the innermost spaces within a warehouse. These can complete checks and manage inventory in less than one third of the time needed to do it manually.

3. Smart Analytics and Machine Learning- Real Contributors to digitalization:

Warehouse digitalization is the future, which will help in driving efficient warehousing operations at every step of the way. An increased amount of data, knowing the right questions to ask, and self-learning algorithms have helped to improve Warehouse operations over the past years and reaped great advantages for the industry. Warehouse digitalization is not just about Big Data and machines anymore, it is also about Smart Analytics and Machine Learning.

The implementation of resource planning, advanced analytics and machine learning methods are helping companies all over the globe to digitalize their processes and competitive advantage.

Many warehouse managers are now interested in interpreting data trends to not only anticipate stocks but also to optimize the capacity of warehouses as well as asset utilization. Predictive analytics make the most of statistical techniques like predictive modeling, data mining, and big data in order to analyze historical trends and forecast the future.

Predictive analytics combined with AI (artificial intelligence), effectively helps recommend replenishing inventory, optimized inventory levels, and increasing operational efficiency along with warehouse optimization.

Key Takeaway: With the growth of e-commerce and the use of technology, there are many warehouses that have been transformed into all-electric warehouses. As Gartner predicts, drones will grow to over 13 million units in 2029 worldwide which was 989,000 in 2019. We are at the threshold of a full-blown transformation of warehouses from high-cost sources of inefficiency to low-cost revenue generation hubs. Find out how you can create a digitalization strategy for your warehouse with Vinculum Solutions Advanced Warehouse Solutions.


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