Progressive Grocer - September 2017 - 112
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voice with other
Warehouse Management Systems
explains Hummert. "The manufacturer then added
light to the pallet jack for each pallet position. Through
voice, we're sending a command to the pallet jack to
light up the pallet position where the selector's going
to place the product. So, as we tell a selector to go to
a location, then confirm the location, we tell them
how many to pick, and then we tell them to place it on
position A. Then we send a command to the pallet jack
to light up position A. This is just another way we can
help companies to achieve even better accuracy."
In addition to this futuristic-sounding technology combination, NCR is offering automation
technology through formation systems, as well as
automated storage retrieval systems (ASRS), continues Hummert. "One of our larger customers that's
using the ASRS is Associated Food Stores, out of
Salt Lake City," he notes. "They actually have two
different versions in place ... a pallet-level ASRS, as
well as a unit-level or case-level system. They have a
large sortation system that feeds off that as well.
"Any time you can utilize automation, your productivity is going to go up, your accuracy is going to
go up and your utilization within the warehouse is
going to go up," adds Hummert.
By integrating different applications within its
warehouse management systems, NCR can help
Top 5 Technology Expansion Plans
Zebra Technology's latest Warehouse Vision
Survey reveals transformational changes in
North America for asset visibility, warehouse
productivity and supply chain integration in
various industries, including grocery. According to the survey, the No. 1 technology in
which executives plan to increase their investment is barcode scanning.
"There's so much that could be and should
be done with the barcode in a lot of operations," notes Mark
Wheeler, director of supply chain solutions - North America
for Holtsville, N.Y.-based Zebra Technologies. "Good, disciplined supply chain management, enforcing the use of the
GS1 standards ... blocking and tackling with barcodes is a
huge opportunity for a lot of people."
The top tech priorities identified by the
survey are as follows:
Equipping Staff With Technology
Internet of Things (IoT)
companies increase their productivity, he continues.
"With warehouse management systems, obviously
we manage the inventory," observes Hummert. "We
also manage the labor, as we have an embedded labor
management system within the WMS [warehouse
management system] that very tightly impacts the
operation. And we take advantage of the fact that it
is integrated to make better decisions so that we get
increased productivity. We also manage the space
within the warehouse, as well as the labor itself."
In fact, Hummert says that he's seeing a lot of focus
on having tighter integration with transportation on
both the inbound and outbound sides of the business.
"On the inbound side, it's making sure the product is
coming in when you need it and having visibility to
what's coming in," he notes. "On the outbound side,
it's ensuring that trailers are in the doors before you
need to load them and making sure you're optimizing
those outbound loads not only from a cube and weight
standpoint, but also from a delivery standpoint -
making sure you have the right routes configured so
you can reduce your overall mileage and increase the
productivity of the drivers themselves."
Built for Speed
Integration is a key business goal for many thirdparty logistics providers as well. Reading, Pa.based Penske Logistics sees warehousing as just
one part of the supply chain that must be closely
linked to other facets. "In most instances, we have
integration between our customers' ERP systems
and either our transportation management or
warehouse management systems," notes Andy Moses, Penske's SVP of global products. "So information is coming in to us, we're doing various types
of processing and transactions, and then we're
normally feeding back some information into the
customers' systems through these integrations."
Moses observes that the fresh channel has
| Progressive Grocer | Ahead of What's Next | September 2017