The rising cost for limited warehouse space is a continuing challenge in the supply chain. A new report (seen above) lists ten U.S. cities that may be most ready to capitalize on the situation. In the table, Phoenix scores the best vacancy rate- still only at 8%. South Florida and Stockton, CA both enjoy an enviable situation with over 6M square feet currently under construction.
Back in a November post, we explored the growth of vertical development in certain real estate markets. Decision makers seek flexible technology solutions such as voice workflows to gain efficiencies in place of expansion or or move. This high demand for industrial real estate is expected to continue – supported by online shopping and the strong economic conditions- and as such, other new options are “popping up.”
Efforts to Match Demand to Capacity:
Companies looking to lower costs while quickly fulfilling their online orders are turning to seasonal or single event pop-up warehouses. Some options are semi-permanent warehousing and can serve to more quickly satisfy certain growing markets or key urban locations. And the pressing demand for workable last-mile logistics solutions is also a driver. There are clear similarities between the on-demand warehouse space and the well known providers in the gig economy such as Uber and Airbnb. All providers aim to efficiently match demand to capacity.
Industrial real estate firms strive to match owners of excess warehouse space with users or retail shippers that need it on a short term basis. The strong growth in ecommerce further challenges the historic warehousing model. This is caused by the need for 3 or even 4 times the warehouse space to assure quick access and handle the reality of increased SKU counts. Blending of technologies is being employed in these new and evolving warehousing space solutions. But the picking of products is still done mainly by human pickers. And in these situations, voice picking can boost both productivity and accuracy by 20% or more.
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Technology is constantly improving, and we can all agree that it is crucial for businesses to continue to upgrade systems in order to maintain a competitive advantage. Pick to voice is a warehouse system that has eliminated many of the problems associated with the older picking solutions. With a voice directed picking solution, the operator uses a bluetooth headset that communicates and confirms picks with the warehouse operator. Pick by voice not only drastically increases accuracy and productivity, but also allows warehouse workers to pick in a seamless manner that does not require them to pause following every pick. Martin Murray, a senior supply chain management consultant and expert in logistics, has succinctly outlined the basic components and benefits of a pick by voice picking system.
Have you ever thought about the value of 15 minutes in your crazy busy day? This infographic quantifies the real magnitude of losing 15 minutes per day around common non-value added daily tasks in most DCs. Sound interesting? Contact firstname.lastname@example.org and let’s chat about about how we can save some time in your DC operations this year.
Many studies report that voice is a worker-preferred pick technology. Companies report quicker onboarding, decreased turnover, and a more satisfied workforce. But why? Enhanced ergonomics? A feeling of empowerment and accomplishment?
In February, we paid a visit to our customer Bluestar in Kentucky to find out why. But we didn’t just ask questions. One of their shift supervisors, Jordan, let us strap a camera to him so that we could experience warehouse voice picking firsthand.
In the industry’s first and only “First Person POV Picking” video, you can experience everything exactly as a selector does. Watch Jordan:
travel from pick to pick
confirm location & quantity
Ready to watch? Click the link below for the full video.
Located in Hebron, KY, BlueStar Inc. is a distributor of point of sale and barcoding hardware/software. When their old picking system presented efficiency challenges, BlueStar upgraded to voice for their pick to tote operation. Watch as the management team discusses the implementation, working with the Mountain Leverage team, and overall results.
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