Velociti Alliance is excited to announce TradeWins! Web Client, for virtual trade shows and attendance of trade shows by off-site customers.
We are often asked, “Do your apps run on iOS/Apple?” Truth is, we love Apple and what they have done to energize the industry! But, business is business. When we want to offer our customers a choice, working with a single device manufacturer that strictly controls the operation of apps on their devices seems, well, just a little too restrictive. Especially when the device only holds 18% of the market share. That’s right, our beloved Apple devices are not even used by 82% of smart device users! So, isn’t it smarter to go with devices made by dozens of different manufacturers who have all standardized on Android®? More devices = more innovation and more to choose from. Still skeptical? Take a look at the chart below.
TradeWins! Trade Show Order Capture has completed a three year ramp-up, and is now being used nationwide. Capture orders using tablets. No USB keys required. No power connections. No valuable booth space taken up by Point of Sale systems. The simplest, fastest order capture system with same-day order recap directly to your customers and vendors!
TW*Sales is the retail operations component of the TradeWins! total distribution solution.
Using any modern Android device, you can enable your customers to place orders, create build-to order profiles, request returns, print shelf labels, and even manage inventory without needing to invest in proprietary hardware. It even runs on a majority of modern smart phones!
For more information, call 864-616-6457 or email firstname.lastname@example.org.
As Velociti continues to push forward with innovative solutions for order capture and fulfillment, we’ve added UniTech to our growing list of supported hardware suppliers. UniTech’s PA700 Rugged Handheld Computer is able to run PiecePick for order fulfillment as well as TW*Sales for order capture at the retail store level! Welcome to the family, UniTech!
The PA700 is an Android handheld computer, rugged and built to last. Built on the fastest growing and most popular mobile platform, the PA700 Android handheld device is a powerful and versatile data collection tool.
Every day, warehouse managers have to make instant decisions based on unforeseen issues that threaten to halt operations. The best managers are those who have mastered the rules of the game.
So why is it that their management software bails out on them after creating an initial operations plan each day? It’s like forcing a world-class chess player to decide on all of his moves, in sequence, before the game has begun! In the world of chess, he would lose every time— and the world of warehouse management is even more complicated…
The day that IBM’s Watson computer won the popular TV game show Jeopardy!, the possibility of creating a fundamentally new, ultra-aware decision support engine for warehouse operations came one step closer to reality. Now it’s available.
CloudLogic™ is a game-theory-based system that plans and communicates each move of people and product in your warehouse. One move at a time. Real-time. Up to a thousand times a second.
For picking, this means that each pick is assigned real-time by evaluating the location of the picker, the congestion downstream of the pick operation, the proximity of other pickers to the target pick, and even the required truck loading time cutoff. Instead of pick path being king, the real issues encountered in a real warehouse can alter the pick instructions the second that conditions change. Priorities can shift, trucks can call in late, orders can be made “hot”, all at any time. …and the warehouse manager will have to do—nothing at all—in order to re-plan the day’s work…
…and now, CloudLogic™ can manage all warehouse operations: Receiving, Putaway, Cycle Counting, Cubing, Picking, Pallet Building, and Loading…
Exceptions occur. CloudLogic™ changes each operator’s task. As needed. Instantly. And each day, CloudLogic™ produces a report that shows, numerically, how well it played the Warehouse Operations game. …you’ll review the report, and find yourself using the same word that many of the nation’s top 10 C-Store distributors have used:
CloudLogic™ is licensed under authority of Solution Partners, Inc.
IBM® , Watson®, Power7®, and the Watson image are registered trademarks of International Business Machines.
Jeopardy! is a registered trademark of Jeopardy Productions, inc.
First there was IBM’s Deep Blue – which beat the world’s greatest chess player…
Then there was IBM Watson – which won TV’s Jeopardy! game show…
Now, there’s CloudLogic®, a gaming-based decision engine that analyzes your warehouse… move by move… up to thousands of times per second!
In the past, legacy systems operated based upon a “pick plan” established as soon as an order was received. One picker. One department. One order at a time.
…maybe the legacy systems could handle batch picking as well, but still – they were (and are) based on a static plan for picking.
CloudLogic® changes all of that.
Now, each pick is evaluated from the “cloud” of all possible picks, and the optimal next move is assigned via CloudLogic®.
CloudLogic® evaluates the warehouse just like Deep Blue would evaluate a chess board to make the next move, only CloudLogic® considers:
- Proximity of the candidate pick to the current picker location
- Current congestion downstream of the picking process
- Potential interference from other pickers assigned to the the same candidate pick area
- Downstream requirement of the product for order fulfillment
- Pick strategy to optimize labor cost: batch pick and sort, order pick, zone pick, or hybrid pick
…and CloudLogic® is not just for picking, but also directs receiving and putaway, cycle count, pallet building, and route-specific truck loading.
CloudLogic® is used under license from Solution Partners, Inc.
“We reduced more than eight people from our cigarette operation while increasing carton sales volume by 25% within the first year of our SmokePick® implementation.”
– Wayne Baquet, President, Imperial Trading Company, New Orleans, LA
“SmokePick® allowed us to cut our inventory in half, cut our labor in half, and reduce the space required for cigarettes by 40%…and we’re still getting better!”
– Bob Rippley, Executive Vice President – Logistics, AWI
“SmokePick® is a major selling tool for our sales force because it is virtually error free.”
– Hal Martin, President, Harrison Company LLC, Bossier City, LA
When a traditional warehouse, one where the order selectors walk or ride from one pick slot to the next, has more SKU than pick slots, many start doing things that are, for the most part, counterproductive. They may be regarded internally as essential to operations; but a disconnected outsider will most likely view it otherwise. A few examples include the following:
- Re-palletize from 48 x 40 pallets to 40 x 32
- Convert two pallet pick slots per pair of beams to multiple “hand stack” shelving pick slots
- Create three high pallet pick slots from two high pick slots by lowering the pallet beams and removing a tier or two from each stored pallet
There are alternatives to these that effectively reduce operating costs – some are better than others.
One alternative solution is to add building space. Besides being an expensive option, the single most significant negative for this option is that the order selector’s travel distance increases for each order picked, increasing labor cost for only a fractional gain in product sales.
A second alternative solution is to purchase powered pallet trucks that raise the operator’s platform, bringing the selectors to the pick level more ergonomically.
A third alternative solution is to invest in a “pick-to-belt” system where the order selectors pick multiple orders simultaneously (i.e. “waves” or “batches”), picking cases to a powered conveyor. In the right application, studies prove that labor productivity for pick-to-belt systems is quite high in spite of the need created to sort and palletize the cases once they’re picked. Though the capital investment for a system like this one is higher than the option to add building space, the investment return is typically better as well.
A fourth alternative is Velociti’s CasePick® system.
CasePick® can be a manual alternative where selectors pick to pallets; or it can be an automated alternative where selectors pick to conveyor. Both methods, manual and automated, tackle the challenges caused by Pareto’s Principle, where medium and slow moving inventory items equal or exceed 80% of the SKU, producing only 20% of the workload. And both process multiple orders at the same time, reducing the number of trips through the pick system, utilizing Velociti’s patent pending inventory management software system.
One key advantage for Velociti’s CasePick® system is the reduced capital investment in powered conveyor and the elimination of multiple mezzanine pick levels. It doesn’t require the capital investment of ”miles” of conveyor and hundreds of square feet of mezzanine (plus stairs) as do the “pick-to-belt” systems.
With CasePick®, success metrics show that inventory storage and product utilization is typically doubled, and pick slot counts are typically increased by 30% as compared to the traditional warehouses that employ hand stacking, re-palletizing to smaller pallets, or three high pick slots.
For more information, click here.
Shakespere said, “A rose by any other name would smell as sweet.” Problem is, whether it’s called “single pick”, or “broken case pick”, or “repack”, not even Shakespere would call anything resembling less-than-case picking a “rose”! He may suggest a thorn…?
In short, broken case picking is all of the following:
- It’s a poor use of warehouse space…
- It’s labor intensive…
- Order accuracy is dependent upon a non-highly compensated associate…
It’s well established that “to increase productivity, one must reduce the number of touches”.
That old adage is now officially proven false…because PiecePick® actually INCREASES the number of touches and at the same time, INCREASES productivity.
The secret is in the definition of the word “touch”. Specifically, how much time is involved in each touch? And how much product is actually picked once the operator is in front of the pick slot? A touch, for example, that requires an operator to move horizontally and/or vertically for several seconds before making a pick of one or two units will have a much lower pick rate than someone who moves only two or three steps and picks 10 or more units.
PiecePick® focuses on touches that require one or two seconds of movement between picks as well as larger pick quantities, sometimes twenty to thirty times more quantity per stop.
Studies suggest the following results:
- Double the amount of product stored in the same amount of space, or the same product in half the space.
- Two-thirds the labor.
- 100% verifiable accuracy.
- A fraction of the capital investment typically required for pick modules with case-flow lanes and “miles of conveyor”. (Please Note: Some companies actually boast about the miles of conveyor in their warehouse. It amazes us…has no one explained how expensive conveyor is per linear foot?)
For those who wish to read more, let’s begin with a simple description of the typical broken case pick system:
- Receiving is where it all begins – so let’s begin there by describing the most typical method. Less-than-case items are typically (not always) received in less-than-full pallet quantities. Perhaps a tier or two of the same item, and often a case or two delivered by a re-seller’s truck with multiple SKU on the same pallet.
- Next is the put-away function. When inventory is moved from receiving to put-away, it is typically moved to reserve. When the pick slot is nearing empty, a replenishment function is requested and inventory is moved from reserve to the pick slot. If the pick slot won’t accommodate the inventory on the pallet, the pallet is returned to reserve – to be called upon again later.
- Picking is next. The most typical method is single order picking to totes transported by either a mobile cart or gravity conveyor. One order selector picks one (or if they’re really good, perhaps two), order for each trip around the pick path. The selector may have pick-to-light for assistance, or voice pick, or no assistance at all. Predominantly, the orders are picked one per person per trip.
- Totes are released from the pick area in one of two ways, a.) as they’re filled, requiring a sorter, or b.) they’re kept together and released when the order is completed.
- The final step is truck loading, where totes are either palletized with full case items and loaded by pallet, or the truck is floor loaded with a combination of cases and totes.
PiecePick® is a completely different paradigm set.
- PiecePick® allows receiving to bring inventory into the warehouse without repalletizing it. Specifically, receivers aren’t required to separate different SKU onto different pallets. The received pallet can be delivered to put-away as it is received. Labor required for re-palletizing at receiving is no longer needed.
- PiecePick® eliminates the replenishment function. Once a product is put into storage, it isn’t touched again until it’s picked. The replenishment function is gone, finished, caput, finis. Labor required for replenishment is no longer needed.
- PiecePick® assigns selectors to pick bulk quantities of inventory for multiple orders at a time. Instead of traveling the pick path once for each order picked, the pick path is traveled only once for multiple orders – perhaps 50 or 150 orders picked at the same time.
- Inventory is touched an additional time for this step because the inventory is now sorted into the shipping containers (i.e. tote or corrugated). To optimize productivity and insure accuracy, PiecePick® utilizes pick-to-light technology, robust controls, and integration of conveyor controls with network software that interfaces with the host computer in real time.
- When a tote is full, it is either pushed onto a take away conveyor and sorted, or it’s retained in queue with the other totes/boxes for the same order until time to be released to shipping and truck loading.
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For more information, click here.