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Automation Effect on the Delivery Process

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Automation Effect on the Delivery Process

How do you solve fluctuating supply problems by smoothing the flow of products?

Let’s set the stage. 

Companies have developed a network of market-facing distribution centers (DCs) to meet customers’ requirements for quick, consolidated delivery. For example, in the consumer products industry, this network of warehouses will be supplied by many plants and copackers, each producing various products in different places. The lead time to produce is far longer than the customers’ expectations when they place and receive the order. The challenge is to have the right product in the market-facing DC before the customer order arrives to ensure that when the order comes, it can be shipped complete and on time. This is achieved through inventory set by a demand-planning system (also known as replenishment planning or the distribution requirements planning (DRP) system). 

What most people don’t realize is…

Most supply-planning systems can inflict cost and, in some cases, even position things to prevent the DC from shipping in full and on time. Here is why: supply-planning systems don’t consider if the supply chain – carriers and warehouses can move all the products it wants to deploy. They assume infinite:

  • carrier capacity with the same level of service and cost
  • capacity for all the facilities to ship and receive
  • space in each facility.

All these assumptions are wrong. This leads to a deployment signal that can violently change day-to-day and needs to consider cost, storage space availability, and throughput capabilities. On one lane, we saw 24 trucks deployed one day and three the next. How is any transportation manager supposed to deliver cost-effective service with that level of variability? And, when the 24 loads arrive at the receiving location, even assuming that the shipping location can pull together enough trailers and people to load them, they are faced with dilemmas: 

  • Many vans are waiting to unload.
  • How do we explain all the detention and overtime expense?
  • Which shipment should we bring in first?

The implication of leaving the products on trailers is that they may be needed for immediate customer orders. The result is often a service failure.

Simple manual solutions may hurt. 

A simple approach may be to set some boundaries on each lane. For example, limit the lane to between 5 and 10 trucks. However, this needs to include the total picture. What if there are urgent customer requirements? Is it better to save a few dollars in freight while paying customer fines for poor customer service than spending extra freight dollars? Instead, there needs to be a tradeoff and understanding of the right balance of cost vs. service. Also, what if there is limited origin-site shipping capacity and another lane urgently needs that limited shipping capacity? In the CPG world, where moves between sites are in full truckloads, it’s essential to understand what is happening in each vehicle. So it Is challenging to ascertain whether the “urgency” of need on lane “A” is more critical than the needed products that will ship on lane “B.”

The solution has to be holistic and automated.

Any solution must encompass the whole network – otherwise, it is just like squeezing the proverbial balloon: fix something in one place, and it pops out somewhere else. Add to this a variety of deployment shipment lead times and the complexities of shipping only full-truckload among facilities, which means any solution must be automated. And yes, with new technology, it can be done.

Because the supply planning solution suggests a significant number of requirements – in many instances, more than can be shipped in a capacity-constrained world, what goes on with a limited number of trucks must be prioritized. This is not a trivial problem, so it must be automated. Such automation needs to build shipments to maximize payload and ensure that the most urgent product is loaded and arrives damage-free.  

It makes life better.

Making optimized tradeoffs across the whole network generates many vital benefits: the most needed shipments are prioritized, enhancing customer service. At the same time, as cost and capacity are considered, the operational cost is minimized using a uniform set of tradeoffs. This uniformity is another benefit of automation.

Automation of the process of modifying supply-planning solutions to consider real-world constraints and optimally building loads is a major win win win.

  • Carriers win because they see significantly less volatility and can operate more efficiently.
  • Shippers win because they can now fulfill orders more completely and at a lower cost.
  • The environment wins as carriers travel fewer deadhead miles, and load optimization generates fewer trucks, reducing carbon emissions.

About the Author

Thomas A. Moore is the Founder and CEO of ProvisionAI, the only provider of a patented optimized replenishment transportation scheduling solution. Tom has founded multiple successful supply chain software companies. Working with industry leaders such as Procter & Gamble, Unilever, Nestle and Kimberly-Clark, he has led the creation of warehousing, truck loading, and network optimization solutions like AutoScheduler, AutoO2, and LevelLoad. Tom has also held line positions in manufacturing, warehousing, and trucking operations. 

 

movu

Movu Robotics Transforms Kris De Leeneer’s Logistics Operations with Innovative Automation Solution

In a groundbreaking collaboration, Movu Robotics has implemented its cutting-edge atlas pallet shuttle system at Kris De Leeneer’s (KDL) state-of-the-art Distribution Centre (DC) in Lokeren, Belgium.

This collaboration marks a significant milestone as the first Movu atlas system tailored for the third-party logistics (3PL) market. The innovative automated storage and retrieval system (AS/RS) provides KDL with approximately 45,000 storage locations and the capability to handle up to 11,000 pallet movements per week, offering unparalleled flexibility and scalability.

Founded in 2001, KDL has positioned itself as a leading logistics service provider, dedicated to enhancing supply chain management for its clients. The Movu atlas shuttle system, integral to KDL’s new 10,000 square meter DC, plays a pivotal role in achieving KDL’s vision of “better, bigger, and easier.” Located in Lokeren and adjacent to the highway, the DC optimizes vertical storage to minimize its footprint, embodying KDL’s commitment to sustainability.

The Movu atlas system, installed in the summer of 2022, boasts a 28-meter-high rack with ten levels, covering a footprint of 60 x 100 meters. The system utilizes 20 Movu atlas pallet shuttles to transport pallets within the rack’s storage lanes. Movu’s Warehouse Execution System (WES) software efficiently manages shuttle traffic, seamlessly integrating with KDL’s Warehouse Management System (WMS).

Kris De Leeneer, CEO of KDL, emphasized the unique advantages of the Movu atlas system, stating, “Movu’s atlas is an efficient and scalable automated warehousing solution that can adapt to our requirements due to its modularity and the ability to add shuttles as required.”

The collaboration between Movu Robotics and KDL extends beyond the atlas system, encompassing integrated in/outbound zones, advanced conveyors, and turntables. The result is a streamlined flow of goods from storage to the dispatch area, featuring ten loading docks.

One of the key strengths of the Movu atlas system is its inherent flexibility. KDL benefits from the ability to easily increase pallet throughput by adding more shuttles, ensuring adaptability to changing business levels and customer demands. The modular rack design allows for future expansion, providing a future-proof solution for KDL’s evolving needs.

Stefan Pieters, CEO of Movu Robotics, expressed the significance of the project, stating, “This project is a great demonstration of bringing easier automation to all warehouses. The atlas shuttle system offers a flexible, scalable, modular approach to automation.”

The success of this collaboration exemplifies the seamless integration of innovative technology into logistics operations, showcasing the potential for automated solutions to enhance efficiency, throughput, and adaptability in warehouse environments.

outrider

Outrider Unveils Advanced AI-Powered Perception Tech for Enhanced Yard Automation

Outrider, a leader in autonomous yard operations for logistics hubs, has announced the latest release of its AI-driven perception technology, setting a new standard for autonomous yard performance and safety. Trained on millions of data points from Fortune 500 customer distribution yards, Outrider’s yard automation solution demonstrates an understanding of, anticipation of, and interaction with the diverse array of fixed and moving elements within a yard. The updated perception system aims to achieve critical safety and performance milestones for commercial driverless operations in 2024.

Andrew Smith, Outrider Founder and CEO, emphasized the complexity of distribution yards as outdoor environments, stating that Outrider’s autonomous system is designed to seamlessly operate alongside various actors, including yard trucks, semi-trucks, trailers, delivery trucks, golf carts, pallets, and personnel. The latest perception technology enhances the efficiency and safety of Outrider’s autonomous system in moving customer trailers and containers.

Outrider’s advanced perception technology identifies specific characteristics of yard actors, such as orientation, position, and velocity, anticipates their trajectories, and responds using predictable, human-like behaviors. Deep-learning models, based on a vast dataset collected from diverse distribution yards, enable the autonomous system to continuously improve its intelligence and precision in automating yard tasks.

Luciano Spinello, Senior Director of Autonomy and Artificial Intelligence at Outrider, highlighted the system’s continuous learning from real-world experiences, drawing from the industry’s largest dataset to operate in more complex traffic scenarios and move trailers with the highest degree of safety and speed over 24-hour periods.

To facilitate the latest perception capabilities, Outrider upgraded its multi-modal sensor platform on each autonomous yard truck, increasing range and sensor data tenfold. This enhancement supports critical safety and performance objectives for scaled driverless operations. Outrider has been collecting perception-based data points across various distribution yards, contributing to the safety and efficiency of operations at each customer site.

The release of the latest perception technology complements Outrider’s industry-firsts and patented innovations, enabling fully autonomous trailer movement, including hitching, backing, trailer brake line connection, and yard inventory tracking. Outrider’s breakthrough year in 2023 includes the addition of trailer inventory tracking technology, a 20% expansion of its engineering workforce in Europe and Latin America, and the announcement of a $73 million Series C financing round, bringing total funding to $191 million.

intelligent warehouse

The Top 5 Inexpensive Warehouse Automation Solutions

Logistics leaders may hesitate to implement upgrades due to their estimated warehouse automation cost calculations. They can be substantial, climbing into the millions of dollars. However, there are various types of warehouse automation to consider, so people can prioritize the least expensive possibilities rather than ruling out automating some processes. 

1. Motor-Driven Roller Conveyors

Warehouse workers don’t make the best use of their time when moving goods from place to place. This approach also prevents them from doing other, more valuable tasks. However, motor-driven roller (MDR) conveyors are affordable ways to automate product movement through a warehouse. 

MDR conveyors can also alleviate warehouse automation cost concerns if people switch to them after using other types. For example, replacing a 5-foot chain-driven live roller with an MDR of the same length could save as much as 81% in energy usage, making the change an excellent investment. That’s partially because they only use electricity when moving things. 

People with modest conveyor belt budgets should make the most of their resources by considering which processes or areas of the warehouse could most benefit from this type of automation. Ordering conveyors in precisely the length needed will keep costs down and help them immediately start taking advantage of this investment. 

2. Warehouse Management Systems

A warehouse management system (WMS) can automate numerous tasks, and people will get the best results if they take the time to learn what’s possible and how to take advantage of the various features. These systems are ideal for eliminating manual tasks such as monitoring inventory levels or counting items. 

Many facilities achieve significant accuracy and product volume gains after implementing WMS. Even if the initial costs are higher than desired, they often pay for themselves over time by enabling process improvements and reducing errors. 

People can also use WMS platforms to create digital guides showing all merchandise locations and storing similar products together in the warehouse. Those are more reliable than paper copies, which can easily get lost or damaged. Plus, a document showing how to find different products is particularly valuable for newer employees who need to become more acquainted with a warehouse’s layout.

WMS providers often allow customers to opt for monthly or yearly billing cycles. The latter type is usually less expensive. However, when decision-makers are on tight budgets and not ready for long-term commitments, they may go with monthly bills to see whether the chosen solutions work as well as expected. 

WMS platforms may also include free trials that let people see what they offer before making billing cycle decisions. Alternatively, product walkthroughs led by sales representatives provide similar information without as much freedom for potential customers to explore the software themselves. 

3. Predictive Maintenance Sensors

Statistics suggest that 90% of maintenance work involves addressing crisis breakdowns. In an ideal situation, people would spend much more time keeping critical machines in good condition, making those urgent circumstances much less common. Predictive maintenance sensors enable this. 

Many commercial solutions automatically collect data and alert the proper parties to abnormalities. Sensors are extremely versatile compared to other warehouse automation types with more limited applications. People can use them on almost any piece of equipment and enjoy the assuredness of getting real-time information streams. 

People can also customize the total warehouse automation cost for this approach by deciding how many sensors they want to use and for what reasons. Being strategic about the options lowers expenses and helps decision-makers get the desired results. 

One possibility is determining which warehouse machinery pieces break down most often.

Alternatively, people can choose those that take the longest to fix or cause the biggest disruptions when issues arise. Next, they should purchase sensors to measure the most common symptoms of abnormalities, whether elevated temperatures, strange vibrations or something else. 

4. Pay-Per-Use Types of Warehouse Automation

Automating a warehouse requires financial resources, even when people aim to do it as affordably as possible. That’s one of the main reasons for the increase in services that allow access to various types of automation without the typical high upfront costs. This trend has resulted in the automation-as-a-service market. 

The specifics differ by provider. Generally, customers pay fees depending on how much they use the automated equipment in a given month. Their subscription prices usually include all maintenance, repair and upgrade costs. 

One company that recently began offering a pay-per-pick model to customers requires them to pay upfront fees to cover the necessary grid infrastructure. The estimated warehouse automation cost in such instances is 20%-40% of the total expenses. After installing the grid, clients budget for recurring subscription fees based on how many robots and other associated technologies they require to meet goals. 

5. Automated Mobile Robots 

Automated mobile robots (AMRs) provide the material-moving capabilities of conveyor belts with even more flexibility. AMRs have sensors and built-in computer vision technology, allowing them to automatically map out a warehouse and recognize obstacles. This means they can move safely around facilities without requiring extra infrastructure. 

People with cost-related concerns should discuss them with their preferred automation providers. Many companies offer finance plans so customers can spread the costs over time. Some may offer refurbished machines priced more reasonably than newer ones. 

Keeping AMRs affordable also means scaling up gradually. A decision-maker might initially only buy a few for some of the most labor- and time-intensive transport-related tasks. That’s an excellent strategy for ensuring people get the anticipated return on investment before purchasing more. 

Warehouse leaders should also ask for feedback from employees, learning about which movement-related tasks are most cumbersome or often take them away from other duties. Those responsibilities could be among the best to automate first. 

Control Warehouse Automation Cost Hesitancy

These types of warehouse automation solutions are among the most affordable possibilities, provided the people involved think carefully about how and why to use them. Although automating a facility requires investments, people can keep costs down by remembering they can gradually implement their plans and wait to see results before committing to additional technologies.

logistics

Draper Associates Makes Strategic Investment in Logic, Revolutionizing Logistics with Automation

Draper Associates, a prominent venture capital firm, has announced a strategic investment in Logic, an innovative logistics automation company leading the charge in reshaping the industry. This investment positions Logic to advance its vision of achieving fully autonomous supply chains through the integration of digital twins, artificial intelligence, and cost-effective robotics.

Renowned venture capitalist and Draper Associates founder Tim Draper expressed his enthusiasm for supporting Logic and its groundbreaking logistics approach. Draper sees Logic’s combination of digital twins, AI, and affordable robotics as a game-changer, paving the way for fully automated supply chains. Tim Draper stated, “Thrilled to back Logic, pioneers in reshaping logistics. Their blend of digital twins, AI, and cost-effective robotics is a game-changer, setting the stage for fully automated supply chains. Proud to support Logic as they create a path to dark warehouses and integrated, intermodal transportation.”

Logic’s Founder & CEO, Michael Santora, expressed deep gratitude for Tim Draper and Draper Associates’ support, highlighting the legendary investor’s endorsement as a powerful validation of the transformative impact Logic is making in the logistics world.

The investment from Draper Associates will provide the fuel needed for Logic’s growth and expedite the development of their innovative solutions. Logic is on track to significantly impact the logistics industry by enhancing efficiency, reducing costs, minimizing emissions, and ushering in a new era of automation.

reuters

Thomson Reuters Introduces Cutting-Edge AI and Automation Features to Transform Tax and Audit Processes Globally

Thomson Reuters, the renowned global content and technology company, has unveiled a series of updates to its tax, accounting, and audit products at its annual customer event, SYNERGY. The enhancements across SurePrep TaxCaddy, Cloud Audit Suite, and ONESOURCE aim to automate tax workflows, bringing increased efficiency and time savings for professionals in firms and multinational corporations. Notably, Thomson Reuters is integrating generative AI capabilities into its tax products, such as Checkpoint Edge and ONESOURCE Global Trade Management.

Piritta van Rijn, Head of Accounting, Tax & Practice at Thomson Reuters, emphasized the challenges tax industry professionals face due to the rapid pace of regulatory changes and hiring difficulties. The newly introduced capabilities leverage AI to automate tax preparation, allowing professionals to focus on client service, business growth, and cultivating better workplaces.

SurePrep TaxCaddy, a key component of Thomson Reuters’ tax product suite following the acquisition of SurePrep, is set to launch auto-categorization capabilities within its intuitive client portal. This feature simplifies document and data gathering, enabling taxpayers to upload multiple documents seamlessly. The incorporation of AI and machine learning technology will auto-categorize these documents, streamlining the review process for tax professionals. The auto-categorization feature is expected to be available to US customers in 2024.

To address the challenge of auditing large volumes of data, Thomson Reuters will introduce ‘smart analysis’ capabilities in Cloud Audit Suite. This enhancement will apply AI to streamline data ingestion, identify potential anomalies, and automate testing and confirmations, thereby improving efficiency and quality throughout the audit process. The smart analysis feature is in beta in the USA starting November 2023, with general availability scheduled for 2024.

The Checkpoint Edge AI Assistant, currently in beta in the USA and set for general availability in 2024, utilizes generative AI to assist tax and accounting professionals in tax research. This tool accelerates the orientation to tax topics and facilitates quicker access to answers, utilizing trusted content with credible citations.

Thomson Reuters is also addressing the compliance needs of multinational corporations with new capabilities in the ONESOURCE suite. The integration of generative AI technology into ONESOURCE Global Trade Management will expedite product classification and mapping for corporate tax and trade professionals, ensuring compliance with changing regulations across multiple countries. Additionally, the ONESOURCE E-Invoicing, now generally available globally, simplifies compliance with electronic invoicing regulations in over 80 countries.

Ray Grove, Head of Corporate Tax and Trade at Thomson Reuters, highlighted the significance of these capabilities in automating compliance around global minimum tax requirements and simplifying e-invoicing. These developments are poised to be game-changers, allowing corporations to build their businesses and support customers while confidently meeting global compliance obligations. Thomson Reuters continues to be at the forefront of innovation, providing comprehensive solutions to navigate the evolving landscape of tax and audit processes worldwide.

robotics intelligent

Navigating the Way of Industrial Automation and Robotics

FMI predicts the Intelligent Power Module Industry to have a CAGR of 11.8% by 2033.

The intelligent power module market is predicted to be worth US$ 1,603.7 million in 2023 and rise to US$ 4,907.3 million by 2033. Demand was initially expanding at a market CAGR of 9.7% between 2018 and 2022.

Due to high power efficiency and low power consumption, the demand for intelligent power modules is well-suited for consumer electronics, smart grids, and other systems. The great advantage of SiC is its enormously improved efficiency. In addition to being quickly adopted in industries that are energy-focused, like electric cars, SiC also improves the efficiency of electronics across industries and helps the world’s carbon footprint. This affects the global growth of the market.

Market Challenges

For the intelligent power module sector to expand quickly, new trends and technologies must be incorporated. Although new technology and its advantages appeal to engineers, creating a control structure is difficult. As a result, the IPM market adopts new technologies at a relatively moderate rate, which is likely to impede the technology’s development.

Key Takeaways

  • By 2033, the intelligent power module market in the United Kingdom is likely to expand, with a CAGR of 23.8%.
  • In 2022, the United States accounted for a share of 19.2% in the intelligent power module sector.
  • The intelligent power module market was significantly expanding, with a size of US$ 1,455.3 million in 2022.
  • By 2033, the intelligent power module market in China is likely to expand, with a CAGR of 20.8%.
  • In 2022, Germany expanded significantly in the intelligent power module business, with an expected share of 7.6%.
  • By 2033, India is projected to expand significantly in the intelligent power module market, with a share of 25.2%.
  • In 2022, Australia developed significantly in the intelligent power module business, with an expected share of 3.1%.
  • Japan’s intelligent power module industry share developed significantly, with a 5.4% share in 2022.
  • In 2022, the IGBT segment led the market with a significant share and is likely to hold a top spot in the market, in terms of type.
  • Based on the application, the consumer electronics market dominated the industry in 2022.

Competitors Winning Strategies

Top companies are releasing updated versions of intelligent power modules; these modules are anticipated to be employed in several applications. To get a competitive advantage in the market, manufacturers are concentrating on crucial strategies to update the system.

Recent Developments

  • Magnachip introduced a new MOSFET 40V version in April 2022 that is vital to vehicle safety and has AEC-Q101 certification. It has a wide range of applications, including BLDC applications for electric oil pumps, electric power steering, engine cooling fans, and battery cooling fans.
  • Infineon Technologies significantly increased its manufacturing capacity for wide bandgap (SiC and GaN) semiconductors in February 2022, bolstering its position as the industry leader in power semiconductors.
  • The business is spending more than US$ 2 billion to construct a third module at its Malaysian facility in Kulim.
  • If completely outfitted, the new module brings in an additional US$ 2 billion in income per year from items made of silicon carbide and gallium nitride.
  • Mitsubishi Electric Corp. presented its newest ultra-compact intelligent power module (IPM), branded as DIPIPMTM Ver.7, in August 2019. This module’s characteristics include less radiation noise, low power consumption, and more flexible heat dissipation.
smart logistics storage

4 Benefits of Integrating an Automated Storage and Retrieval System

As logistics professionals investigate how to keep productivity high while workers handle an increasing number of items, many believe automated storage and retrieval systems (ASRS) could help them achieve the desired scalability and consistency. An emerging trend involves using artificial intelligence (AI) for even better results. Here are some things leaders can expect by implementing such systems.

1. Raise Order Fulfillment Rates

Many companies must fill more orders than ever, particularly with customers from all over the country or world purchasing goods online and expecting the products to arrive in a matter of days. Logistics professionals must carefully coordinate what happens once goods leave a factory, but they can get off to a strong start by improving the coordination of warehouse-related movements. Automated storage and retrieval systems can help.

One such system — which utilizes AI, smart sensors and robotics — can bring significant workflow advantages. They include picker productivity rates increasing by four to five times, so workers can get more done in less time.

This particular system uses mobile robots to go down aisles, reach individual bins and bring them to the proper workstations. From there, humans can do the necessary processing tasks to prepare products for shipment. Such productivity improvements are particularly advantageous for companies that often deal with demand fluctuations.

For example, many businesses process more orders during the holiday season or when students return to school. ASRS infrastructure supports decision-makers to handle those spikes with ease.

Before investing in ASRS options with built-in AI technology, people should consider which problems they want to overcome or what they hope to achieve. They should then use that information to determine which commercially available systems match their requirements most effectively. Alternatively, custom solutions are possibilities when people have specific needs commercial products don’t yet meet.

2. Integrate ASRS With Warehouse Management Systems

Many logistics leaders find they must use warehouse management systems (WMS) to stay competitive in changing environments. These tools help users with multiple needs. For example, they can rely on the associated data to determine whether they have enough employees to handle anticipated labor needs.

A WMS can also track goods as they move around the warehouse. That’s beneficial for preventing high-value or large shipments from getting lost, which could represent significant losses for the affected companies. Similarly, if a business has ongoing problems with goods getting lost or broken, the WMS could help leaders determine what’s going wrong and why.

Most of today’s leading WMS systems have AI features. These typically assist with resource management, including predicting which products will sell fastest or recommending when people should reorder certain items to avoid unplanned stockouts.

One way to make the most of those offerings is to let the AI guidance shape how people use ASRS infrastructure. Perhaps the WMS algorithms predict a product will sell much faster than others. In that case, people may change how much of the item they have on hand, as well as its location within the automated storage and retrieval system. Those who take that approach should always give themselves ample time to learn how to use AI features.

It’s also important to use artificial intelligence as a guide that supports human expertise without replacing it. Well-trained algorithms can process data much faster than humans, allowing them to spot trends. However, AI tools aren’t perfect, so people should always apply their judgment before approving anything an algorithm suggests.

3. Maximize Available Storage Space

Many warehouse managers face the challenge of accommodating increasingly more products and categories. Such circumstances increasingly push people to investigate storage options. For example, a pallet flow racking system allows storing products up to 20 pallets deep, significantly increasing the warehouse’s available density.

Logistics professionals know how important it is to store things strategically, creating systems that support defined business needs. An ASRS solution is not the only option, but it’s popular due to the benefits of combined density and automation. People can also customize how items get stored in their facilities.

One frequently chosen possibility is the first-in-first-out method. It’s one of the best ways to manage perishable goods in the food, beverage or pharmaceutical industries. This approach means the products in storage the longest are the first ones a company uses. It can prevent items from expiring before customers use or even see them.

Some ASRS infrastructure also lets people take advantage of shallow and deep storage, depending on their needs. One beverage bottler in the Asia-Pacific region has an incredible 12,000 storage locations, allowing the business to handle current and emerging requirements.

When decision-makers want their ASRS to have integrated artificial intelligence features, they must always consider their must-have attributes. Automated storage and retrieval systems with AI are still relatively new. That may mean it’s necessary to have some tradeoffs when people are adamant their new system must include AI.

4. Save Time With Pick-Path Optimization

The pick path is an employee’s route through a warehouse when grabbing items to fill orders. However, most automated storage and retrieval systems also optimize their pick paths to work as efficiently as possible.

One commercially available AI solution reduces congestion and dwell time while minimizing travel distances. It can still achieve those benefits when users store goods in differently-sized containers. This option suits warehouses with up to 20,000 SKUs, providing up to 40% more throughput than manual operations.

Some companies also combine automated storage and retrieval systems with mobile robots to further reduce workers’ time moving through warehouses. That’s a practical way to implement artificial intelligence if the ASRS does not include the technology.

Before using any automated systems in a facility, an excellent starting point is to ask workers which tasks consume most of their time and what could make them more efficient. Their answers may be valuable for planning which ASRS to use so employees can maximize their time.

People should also view pick-path optimization as a constantly changing aspect due to how circumstances shift when items get added or removed from a warehouse. One of the benefits of using AI is the technology can recognize what’s different and make decisions accordingly.

Automated Storage and Retrieval Systems Make Good Business Sense

The four reasons above highlight why logistics professionals commonly choose automated storage and retrieval systems to streamline operations. Selecting options with built-in artificial intelligence are particularly useful for supporting decision-making in high-volume, fast-paced environments.

 

automation customer

RPA for Customer Services: Unlocking Business Success through Automation

Customers under any business sector have the potential to make or break a brand therefore, it is of the essence to offer best-in-class customer services to your end users. To revolutionize this arena a newly introduced concept has brought about a radical shift within the ambits of customer service that is robotic process automation (RPA) that enables business owners to realize their full potential and leverage this modern technology and its benefits, unlocking business success through automation.

RPA not only boosts employee productivity and business process efficiency but also the enterprises can automate several labor tasks and repetitive operations that are connected to customer service through RPA.

There are numerous roles related to customer service that can be benefitted from RPA automation. Such consists of answering client questions, managing tickets, entering data, validating information, and solving queries. Organizations may automate these processes with RPA, which may lower time-consuming, cut down on errors, and boost overall service quality. In this article, you will see how the role of RPA for customer services can be utilized in different organizations to streamline different operations.

The Effective Role of RPA for Customer Services

The role of RPA for customer services refers specifically to the use of RPA technology in the customer service industries. This can involve setting up voice assistants, automating call center procedures, setting up chatbots to assist clients, and many other things. Certain client encounters can be automated with RPA and allow employees extra time to focus on important customer contacts while providing quick answers to consumer questions.

In some of the sectors, RPA developers have already been into practice to Revolutionize operations. The reason is, most of the tasks can be automated and provide better services to the customers. This technique simply accelerates workflow as well as data integration.

Top Use Cases of RPA for Customer Services

PRA applications have been working wonders in different industries; some of the wonders we will see in customer services are also where RPA can offer considerable advantages.

Customer Inquiry Management

By automating data collecting and giving quick responses, RPA can manage the initial phase of customer inquiries. Bots can compile data on customers, gain access to knowledge sources, and offer pertinent responses to frequently requested topics. This shortens response times, enhances client satisfaction, and streamlines the inquiry process.

Improve data security

Implementing RPA enables safe data handling while also reducing errors, enhancing data quality, enforcing uniformity, and promoting compliance. RPA software bots even deliver notifications to alert users about the transaction in the event of any fraud detection. RPA implementation can benefit a variety of businesses, including the banking sector, finance, insurance, and retail.

Manage customer refunds

Without human involvement, RPA bots may retrieve client refund questions from emails and SMS and start refund processes. The user may also receive a notification from the bot via email or SMS after the refund has been completed.

These automation services help clients to get their money back right away for returned goods or postponed travel. This use case can be advantageous to a wide range of industries, including FMCG, retail, hotel, etc.

Account Management

RPA bots that can manage numerous accounts tasks. Some of them include updating client profiles, processing account modifications or cancellations, and handling subscriptions. This automation provides effective account maintenance while allowing human agents to concentrate on more complicated account-related concerns. You can also relate to many popular sites that work always on their audience so their account can become popular as well. So, to grow your site you have to grow your followers, and this makes it easy to penetrate the industry.

Self-Service Assistance

Chatbots that offer customers self-service choices can be powered by RPA. Bots can answer frequent questions, assist users with self-service tasks, and, if necessary, it can even escalate difficult problems to human agents. This technology allows the customers to get access to the information they require and improve the overall experience.

The Benefits of RPA for Customer Services

In terms of customer service, RPA has a number of benefits. Here are a few of the main benefits:

  • Reduced costs: A greater level of performance is achieved when costs are decreased, and RPA is one of the finest options for doing so.
  • Better experiences: Most of the agents often invest a lot of time looking up and tracking customer information across multiple systems. RPA can assist agents in reducing lead times and providing better service.
  • Improved processes: RPA will not only increase efficiency and decrease errors, but it will also make processes more predictable and enforce compliance.
  • Faster Response Times: Response times can be shortened by RPA Bots. These Bots are able to gather significant client data from numerous systems, improving customer happiness and expediting the resolution of problems.

Summary

RPA in customer service boosts efficiency, streamlines processes, and improves the customer experience. Organizations can concentrate on developing closer relationships with their consumers and providing additional benefits by availing the services from an RPA consulting firm.

Hope this article was informative and if you are a service-providing organization employing this technology will be a great choice.

Damotech warehouse security soundproofing

CILTSA Leads the Discussions on Warehouse Automation at its Free-to-Attend Conference

The Chartered Institute of Logistics and Transport: South Africa (CILTSA) is gearing up to host an informative and insightful warehousing conference. Themed ‘Warehouse Automation: The benefits and risks’, this hybrid event takes place on 23 May at The Garden Venue in North Riding, Johannesburg and online.

The program includes talks on:

  • ‘Warehouse automation: the benefits and risks’ by Martin Bailey FCILT, Chairman of Industrial Logistic Systems
  • ‘How to optimize digital transformation in your warehouse’ by Munya Huvsu, CEO – ISB Optimus
  • ‘The current challenges preventing warehousing automation and how to overcome them’ by Gerhard van Zyl – Group Operations Director: AsimoTech
  • Safety and compliance in the modern warehouse, transport and logistics environment by Annah Ngxeketo – Founder and CEO: Mamoja Projects

Warehouse automation aims to automate repetitive and tedious manual tasks in warehousing operations, making manual work less labor-intensive, whilst reducing labor costs. It also increases productivity, accuracy and safety levels.

While the possibilities of warehouse automation are varied and exciting, investing means making difficult choices and taking high risks. “Implementing automation technologies in a logistics network is costly and time-consuming, with hundreds of possibilities, from the most basic to the most innovative. It is a long-term investment: experts are quick to cite the benefits of warehouse automation, but it is also vital to understand and assess the risks”.

CILTSA’s conference is being hosted in collaboration with the Transport Forum. The event sponsors are Acrow, Fumani Holdings, ISB Optimus, Mamoja Trading and Projects, Toyota Material Handling and Tendai Mhlanga Photography. Event supporters include CILTSA interest group Women in Logistics and Transport: South Africa (WiLATSA), the African Women in Supply Chain Association and Sincpoint.

To sign up for this free-to-attend event in person, register at https://www.transportsig.com/component/dtregister/23-may-2023-737/register?Itemid=99999  If you wish to attend online, click on https://us02web.zoom.us/meeting/register/tZMlc–gqz4sEtdBC20H9ItPB_NGnjhIo92o

About CILTSA

The Chartered Institute of Logistics and Transport supports the professionals who plan the systems, bring in the raw materials, manage the movement of people and goods, who ensure safety standards, maintain mobility, and keep the economy working.

We are the leading professional body for everyone who works in supply chain, logistics and transport. We are a global family, representing professionals at all levels across all sectors, with a mission to give individuals and organizations access to the tools, the knowledge and connections vital to success in the logistics and transport industry.

Founded in 1919 with a mission to improve industry practices and nurture talent, our Institute supports over 35,000 members in 35 countries. Through our educational suite, our strong community and our commitment to high standards, we help professionals at all levels to develop their careers and access better jobs.