Free design & quotation:
0800 281 720

How have warehouses changed in the 21st Century?

Posted by Trevor
July 23, 2014 in Features

During the 20th Century, warehouses were viewed quite differently from how they are today. They were buildings inside which most procedures were carried out manually, and where it was difficult to cope with sudden changes in the demand for goods, because warehouses were not fully integrated with planning and marketing departments. Today’s warehouses have been promoted from their former role behind the scenes to being at the forefront of customer service, with e-commerce encouraging customers to expect instant gratification and with technological advances enabling companies to meet that expectation.

21st century warehouses rely on automation

It has only recently become possible for customers to obtain products more or less instantly from e-commerce companies, and this has come about through advances in warehouse technology. One of the systems being used is known as a batch-and-wait operation. Customer orders are picked in batches, which cuts down travel time and speeds up the picking process, before being separated into individual orders prior to leaving the warehouse. This type of system has been found to be more efficient than picking orders for each customer separately. Technology has made it possible to pick up batches more effectively by accumulating orders within the system until there are enough of a similar type to make up a batch.

In the 21st century, the flow of goods into and out of warehouses can be monitored more accurately than ever before, because technology allows the integration of warehouses and logistics company systems. Transport provision can now be fine-tuned so that it more closely meets levels of customer demand, saving money for the warehouse-owning company.

The transport of goods inside warehouses has also been revolutionised this century, with changes in the forklift industry allowing trucks to be incorporated more fully into the warehouse system. The addition of on-board computers means that data from forklifts can be easily accessed by the warehouse manager. The manager can view data about the truck’s lift and travel and its hours of activity, acquiring a thorough understanding of what is happening inside the warehouse. The data is all available via the web and can be accessed using a browser.

Warehouse racking that helps its workers

The latest developments in warehouse racking have made it possible to install fully automated systems with mobile shelving and robots that can move inventory. Having the goods move to the workers rather than the other way around is much more efficient in today’s huge warehouses, in which employees may have to walk many miles each day on hard floors. As the robots move products over to the workers the goods then identify themselves, so that they can be quickly picked and packed in what is a speedier, safer and altogether more ergonomic fashion than anything seen in warehouses in the 20th Century.

As e-commerce continues to increase in popularity, the importance of the warehouse in fulfilling customer orders will only strengthen, and 21st century technology will play a crucial part in making sure warehouses can remain responsive to the demands of the market.

No Comments

No comments yet.

RSS feed for comments on this post. TrackBack URL

Sorry, the comment form is closed at this time.

Everything you need to know about Storage and Shelving

Storage is one of the key factors in ensuring that a business is organised, its operations run smoothly and that workflows are able to run efficiently. Businesses across all sectors require a type of storage, whether it’s for data, paperwork or simply for the products you offer. There are many different types of storage solutions, catering for a multitude of different environments. Shelving racking and warehouse storage, all of which can be provided by Spacelink.

 » Read more about: Everything you need to know about Storage and Shelving  »

Benefits of suspended ceilings

Everything you need to know about suspended ceilings are usually extensions made to existing ceilings. These ceilings are used to conceal any wires or pipes which may be on show that could give off a bad first impression of your workplace. Another common use for suspended ceilings is soundproofing. In a workplace where concentration is crucial to be successful, at times it is key that there are low levels of noise. However, sometimes noise can be created by other sources such as neighbouring employees and if the workplace is not sound proof,

 » Read more about: Benefits of suspended ceilings  »

Divide your Work Place with Partitioning Systems

Having an office with a wide-open space with all departments together can sometimes cause a lot of noise with different projects happening simultaneously. Having partitioning systems installed in an office doesn’t mean just having separate spaces in the office for different departments, partitioning can also create a professional meeting room. There are many different designs of office partitioning which our experienced team can both design and install, frameless glass partitioning, demountable partitions which has sound attenuation,

 » Read more about: Divide your Work Place with Partitioning Systems  »

Turn Your Meeting Room into Two with Operable walls

Having only one meeting room can often cause difficulties and frustrations when two meetings are scheduled in at the same time and this is where operable walls can really come in handy and prove to be extremely efficient. When in use, they create a structural wall splitting up a room and when they are no longer required they can be folded or stacked against the wall to give back the original open space.

 » Read more about: Turn Your Meeting Room into Two with Operable walls  »

New Year, New Office

Many offices don’t get refurbished for many years after they’re first completed, so 2017 may be the year that your office deserves a well-earned refurb, even if it is just a lick of paint! There’s nothing better than kick-starting the new year with a brand new looking office ready to get back into the swing of things after the festivities. Companies often have a business plan for the year ahead and if you’re planning on growing yours,

 » Read more about: New Year, New Office  »