Articles

Materials Handling

Robert Arndt

Making a Business Case for Lean MHE

Q: What are the biggest cost drivers in a distribution center? A: Distribution centers are driven by four primary costs. Labor is usually the largest cost, which is why companies focus on it so much. Second is the building itself. Third are the IT systems necessary to support the operation. Finally, there’s materials handling equipment […]

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Ravi Pappu

RFID Delivers the Power to Transform Markets

Q: The business cases for achieving improved visibility throughout the supply chain have been identified. What technologies should logistics providers consider to get there? Pappu: Physical objects are becoming coupled with a myriad of radio technologies to drive a communications revolution. For instance, location information from GPS satellites 16 miles above the earth is being […]

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Phil Van Wormer

Tracking Warehouse Inventory on the Move

Q: Despite technology advances in end-to-end supply chain visibility, the warehouse is still a “blind spot” for many companies. What can be done to improve visibility within the four walls to bring the same level of excellence achieved in other areas of the supply chain? Van Wormer: Over-the-road transportation fleets have gained tremendous productivity through […]

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Peter Hartman

Upgrading Order Fulfillment Systems Boosts Warehouse Efficiency

Q: Is it possible to speed product flow in response to customer demands and cut inventory processing costs at the same time? Hartman: Many automated systems installed several years ago were not designed to handle escalating customer requirements, such as higher accuracy, more complex traceable orders with multiple SKUs, and more on-time deliveries. Nor did […]

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Mick Mountz

Mobile Robots Expand Warehouse Automation Options

Q: Warehouse managers are tasked with making investment decisions about systems that must scale for growth, often leading to unnecessary spending based on faulty five- and 10-year plans. Are there equipment options that can help mitigate this risk for warehouse management? Mountz: Mobile-robotic solutions offer a whole new approach to warehouse automation. Using features such […]

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