Improving Your Manufacturing Operations Using Warehouse Automation

June 27, 2019 | 66 views

Today’s guest blog is written by Ian Todd, Director of Automated Parking Systems for Westfalia Technologies, Inc. Ian is an expert on warehouse automation, and shares his insights on how you need to get started in thinking about technology and robotics in your warehouse or manufacturing operation. Sandwiched between warehouse and distribution center, manufacturing is where the value gets added. It’s where raw materials and components are turned into finished products that consumers will buy.

Spotlight

TGW Logistics Group

We at TGW live and breathe logistics. As such, we are the ideal lifecycle partner for our customers – from planning and solutions design to project realization and lifetime service. We create reliable and sustainable supply chain technologies, products and turnkey solutions worldwide with entities throughout Europe, North America and Asia.

OTHER ARTICLES
SOFTWARE AND TECHNOLOGY,LOGISTICS

Autonomous Robots: The Future of Warehousing & Logistics

Article | July 20, 2022

Autonomous robots have transitioned from a futuristic system that only a few enterprises could afford to a sustainable, well-established solution in a wide assortment of warehouse automation projects in recent years. With the flourishing transportation and logistics industry and increasing e-commerce penetration worldwide, innovative technologies are revealing promising opportunities throughout the supply chain. Warehouse Automation: Driving Value in the Supply Chain Historically, autonomous robots have been used to perform tedious and repetitive tasks, necessitating sophisticated programming for setup and incorporation while lacking the dexterity to easily adjust operations. As autonomous robots become more intelligent, their setup times decrease, they need less monitoring, and they are able to work alongside their human counterparts. The benefits for the future supply chain are increasing as autonomous robots become more capable of working day and night with more consistent levels of productivity and quality and performing tasks that individuals should not, cannot, or do not want to do. Autonomous robots drive advancements and add value to the supply chain, primarily by increasing revenue potential and lowering direct and indirect operating costs. Autonomous robots, in particular, can assist: Boost efficiency and productivity. Lower risk, error frequency, and rework rates. Enhance employee safety in high-risk workplaces. Handle low-value, routine tasks so people can work together on strategic projects that can't be done by machines. Raise revenue by optimizing order fulfillment rates, and delivery speed, and, ultimately, increasing customer satisfaction. Sneak Peek into the Future of Autonomous Robot Autonomous robots are expected to witness strong growth in the coming years. These robots will become more common in the future supply chain as technology advances, allowing them to operate with more human-like abilities. Improvements in haptic sensors, for example, will enable these robots to grasp objects varying from multi-surfaced metal assembly parts to fragile eggshells without requiring changes to robotic components or programming. This will encourage companies operating in the industry to increase their research and development activities and introduce innovative and advanced supply chain technologies.

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SOFTWARE AND TECHNOLOGY,LOGISTICS

Complexities Triggering Technological Advancement in Transport & Logistics

Article | July 16, 2022

Over the past decade, transportation and logistics have witnessed an immense transformation, from using automotive vehicles to drones and paper tags to advanced geotags. Also, the introduction of novel technologies and incorporation of innovative solutions such as artificial intelligence and blockchain has further reshaped the sector. How is Rising Complexity Triggering the Adoption of Novel Technologies? Today's supply chain is, in a word, complex. It has so many complexities, from ever-rising consumer expectations and disruptive events to globalized sourcing and omnichannel demand, that it is now being compared to a modern-day Gordian knot. With complexity comes ambiguity, particularly in the transportation and logistics industry. For instance, importers are expected to find cost-effective and efficient ways to transport goods from manufacturing facilities, which are frequently located halfway around the world, to distribution centers and then, ultimately, into the hands of consumers. In addition, e-commerce has further added to the complexity by introducing new channels into the jumble along with the introduction of same-day or next-day delivery standards with higher transparency and tracking features by leading players such as eBay, Walmart, and Amazon Here are a few prominent technologies assisting logistics companies to counter these complexities. Data Analytics Big data analytics aids in the more accurate and efficient planning of operational processes, services, and strategies, allowing businesses to align with emerging consumer needs. Artificial Intelligence (AI) and Machine Learning AI and Machine Learning have become the most sought-after tech in the transportation food chain. It assists businesses in enhancing operational functionality, boosting productivity and speed, designing optimal transit networks and routes, and improving safety through predictive risk calculation and elimination. The Internet of Things (IoT) With the rising need for transparency and tracking of shipped goods, IoT is garnering immense popularity across the transportation and logistics sector. It enables businesses to monitor and track their goods in real-time with the help of geo-tagging, RFID tags, and GPS, resulting in fewer delays in deliveries.

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SOFTWARE AND TECHNOLOGY,SUPPLY CHAIN

Predicting the Future of the Logistics Industry

Article | July 18, 2022

Introduction From warehouse robots to delivery drones, the supply chain is experiencing a tremendous upheaval. AI promises a totally autonomous and self-organized future supply chain. A fleet of vehicles utilizing a swarm algorithm can enhance cargo yard throughput; a trusted peer-to-peer ledger on blockchain architecture could change compliance in the sector; and wearables, mobile robotics, and machine learning technologies could speed up order fulfilment. IOT e-brokerage solutions can link shops to couriers and transporters with a click. Tomorrow's supply chain will be leaner, quicker, and self-organized. A few innovative technologies will fuel this unparalleled rate of change over the next 15 years. Here are the major technologies that are shaping the future of the logistics industry. Logistics Technologies for the Future Shipment Tracking Systems Previously, customers ordered shipments, had an anticipated arrival date, and then were kept in the dark until they chose to call. Customers can now access shipping and tracking systems around-the-clock due to developments in the internet and software. This not only enhances the customer experience (cx), but it also saves the business time and money. Internet of Things (IoT) The IoT reduces costs and delays by minimizing hazards in the supply chain. Cabs, cargo ships, trains, etc., have sensors that link to an alarm system or dispatcher. These sensors analyze and communicate information to the crew, who learns about hidden threats. IoT isn't a new technology, but it continues to influence logistics by improving in-transit visibility and delivery. Radio Frequency Identification (RFID) RFID technology has been used for a few years to monitor inventories labor-efficiently. A product tag or sensor produces radio waves. The company processes the data. RFID tags are similar to barcodes, but their faster information transport and data processing appeal to companies and the direction of technology. Many organizations use RFID tags to track containers in warehouses. Enhanced GPS Accuracy Almost everyone utilizes GPS on their vehicles or smartphones. These devices' accuracy has improved over time, assisting lost drivers and enhancing the supply chain. By monitoring truck locations and boosting hauls with current traffic data, GPS increases efficiency and customer satisfaction. Closing Lines Unprecedented times have produced unprecedented transformations that will last for generations. Changing demographics, technology improvements, and COVID-19 impacts are altering global supply networks. We must understand the driving factors and act on what we learn to adapt and rise to the situation. For the sake of our current workforce and future generations.

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SUPPLY CHAIN

Purchasing vs. Supply Chain Management software

Article | June 29, 2022

Purchasing software and supply chain management software are often mistaken for one another, but both have distinct functionalities. While purchasing software automates the procurement process, supply chain management software executes logistical transactions and manages supplier relationships. This report identifies the similarities and differences between the two software categories to help you understand which one is better suited to your needs. What is purchasing software? Purchasing software is an online tool that allows businesses to automate the process of procuring goods and services. It includes security compliance and reporting features. Purchasing solutions offer integrated tools for invoice approval, inventory control, asset management, customer service, and work order management. They help manage contracts, analyze spending, track sales deliveries, and monitor inventory levels. They also assist in identifying bottlenecks in the purchase process, such as functions that have high expenditure. Purchasing software offers invoice processing capabilities as well. Procurement professionals and accounting teams can use the tool to generate invoices, track invoice status, and monitor expenses via detailed reports. What is supply chain management software? Supply chain management software is a software platform that allows supply chain managers to automate the entire supply chain process—from acquiring raw materials to delivering the finished goods to consumers. The software provides tools for monitoring stock levels, including raw materials, and predicting future requirements based on the current inflow and outflow of inventory. Supply chain management tools manage material handling, order fulfillment, and information tracking for stakeholders such as manufacturers, suppliers, and transport and logistics providers. They also track the returns of damaged goods, process refunds and insurance claims, and provide planning and forecasting tools for supply chain professionals. What do they have in common? Purchasing is a crucial component of supply chain management. Together, these processes significantly contribute to an organization’s procurement cycle. Despite the functionality differences, both the software categories have a few features in common, including supplier management, order management, and forecasting. Which tool is right for you? The answer to this question depends on your use case. If you’re looking for a tool that majorly focuses on acquiring supplies, opt for a purchasing software solution, as it will help you streamline the procurement cycle, maintain purchase order accuracy, and monitor supplier activities. However, if you wish to manage your entire supply chain operations, including supplier, transportation, warehouse, and inventory management, then investing in a supply chain software solution would be the right choice.

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Spotlight

TGW Logistics Group

We at TGW live and breathe logistics. As such, we are the ideal lifecycle partner for our customers – from planning and solutions design to project realization and lifetime service. We create reliable and sustainable supply chain technologies, products and turnkey solutions worldwide with entities throughout Europe, North America and Asia.

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DealerOn partners with DRAIVER, an AI Powered Logistics platform with a nationwide on-demand vehicle delivery marketplace of drivers.

DealerOn | March 03, 2022

DealerOn and DRAIVER announced a strategic partnership today that will give dealers a turnkey solution for test drives and vehicle delivery that is fully integrated into the online shopping process through DealerOn's Apex digital retailing tool. The agreement brings together DealerOn, the leader in automotive websites, with DRAIVER, the number one logistics platform, on-demand driver marketplace and vehicle delivery system. The process of moving inventory around is wildly inefficient and costly for dealers, DRAIVER comes to the dealer's rescue by offering a solution that pairs dealers with vetted drivers that can get cars into the hands of car shoppers without the overhead. The direct integration with DealerOn's Apex means it's never been easier for our mutual dealership customers to ensure test drives are quick and easy." DealerOn CEO Ali Amirrezvani. When using Apex to browse a dealership's inventory, customers have a safe and easy way to have any vehicle delivered to them for a test drive. DRAIVER is thrilled to partner with DealerOn, giving us the opportunity to integrate our AI powered vehicle delivery platform combined with our national marketplace of vetted and insured drivers directly with DealerOn, whose new products are poised to be the standard for online retailing will provide our mutual client dealerships the best-in-class tools and services they need to compete in today's digital retail and home delivery marketplace." Anthony Monteiro CRO at DRAIVER About DealerOn DealerOn is the leader in automotive digital marketing, providing dealerships with platforms scientifically engineered to generate more leads than the competition, to crafting a web presence as personal as each individual dealership. DealerOn has extensive partnerships with the biggest names in the industry from Ford to GM and looks forward to a long and fruitful collaboration with DRAIVER.

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ExFreight Launches Pioneering Digital Air Freight Service

ExFreight | March 03, 2022

ExFreight continues to lead the transportation industry with innovative online technology for shippers and transportation providers. ExFreight's newly launched instant, dynamic air freight rating and carrier booking functionality is a game-changing advancement within the sphere of air freight shipping. This latest release expands the existing digital functionality of ExFreight's instant rating, booking, and map-based tracking platform for trucking, ocean freight, and air freight services. Shippers can now obtain an instant air freight shipping quote rate across multiple carriers with real-time visibility of flight details and available capacity. Options can be sorted by price, transit time, and reliability. Bookings and space can be secured immediately via a direct connection with the respective carrier's air cargo management system along with receipt of space confirmation. This new functionality is the next step in the ongoing evolution of ExFreight's best of breed digital freight system. By applying advanced technology to time sensitive air freight shipping, customers are able to realize supply-chain efficiencies while avoiding antiquated methodologies of traditional freight forwarders. The days of sending email back and forth with a freight forwarder for a singular air freight rate and attempted booking are now over. No other transportation provider within the industry is able to provide instant door to door international air freight rates with multiple carrier and routing options coupled with space confirmations. This is augmented with up-front carrier reliability ratings, carbon emission estimates and the optional addition of cargo insurance. Lastly, shippers are able to login to a central dashboard to access active shipment, carbon footprint, billing, and quote history reporting. On an individual shipment basis, highly detailed information is provided that shows every step of the shipment plan and process throughout the cargo journey. Our existing system functionality has been enhanced once again to provide shippers with a valuable tool to facilitate their supply-chain needs. Utilization of our online system continues to provide a distinct competitive advantage to our customers and partners." CEO Charles Marrale

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TRAC INTERMODAL TEAMS WITH ZEBOX TO TRANSFORM TRANSPORTATION AND LOGISTICS

TRAC Intermodal | March 01, 2022

TRAC Intermodal, the largest marine chassis provider in the United States, today announced its new partnership with ZEBOX, the international accelerator and innovation hub for the supply chain, logistics, and Industry 4.0 spaces. Committed to fostering talent and supporting technological innovation, ZEBOX's mission is forging connections between disruptive startups and established industry leaders accelerating sustainable innovation to transform the global supply chain. Working together, TRAC and ZEBOX will create opportunities for high-impact innovation and accelerate the digital transformation of global supply chains. Created in 2018 by Rodolphe Saade, Chairman and CEO of the CMA CGM group, a world leader in shipping and logistics, the ZEBOX network supports startups throughout their development by helping them to rapidly scale and gain exposure in the international community. The industry-leading companies that comprise the ZEBOX network similarly gain important opportunities to collaborate and benefit from the innovations developed by startups in their respective sectors. At ZEBOX, we strongly believe in the power of collaborations between large companies and startups. That's why it's so important to us to build close relationships with corporate partners who are leaders in their field, TRAC has been a pioneer in providing intermodal solutions for nearly half a century. Their leadership, insights, and guidance will add great value not only for startups, but also for the core members of our international network." Charley Dehoney, Vice-President of ZEBOX America. Since our founding, TRAC has set the standard for quality, reliability and innovation in intermodal transportation, Our partnership with ZEBOX provides an invaluable opportunity to help chart the future for our industry and meet supply chain challenges head-on by tapping into some of the brightest young minds, innovative engineering designs, and breakthrough technologies coming out of the startup community." Daniel Walsh, President and CEO at TRAC Intermodal. Launched in Marseille, France, ZEBOX now also operates innovation hubs in the Caribbean area, in Guadeloupe, and in Arlington, Va., at National Landing, the first 5G smart city at scale in the United States and a prime environment for startups on the cutting edge of robotics, augmented reality, artificial intelligence, and autonomous mobility. More locations will be soon announced. 55 startups have already been supported by ZEBOX, and the first call for applications dedicated to ZEBOX AMERICA has just been launched. About ZEBOX ZEBOX is a global incubator and accelerator dedicated to fostering innovation by forging compelling collaborations between early-stage startups and corporate stakeholders. Created in 2018 by Rodolphe Saadé, Chairman and CEO of CMA CGM Group, a world leader in shipping and logistics, ZEBOX enables the supply chain of the future by focusing on two key segments: Transportation/logistics and Industry 4.0. ZEBOX accelerates digitalization, automation, and sustainability by harnessing new technologies including AI, IoT, Big Data, and robotics. Led by Massimo Magnifico, an expert in startup incubator management, ZEBOX is building a diverse ecosystem bringing together stakeholders including corporate partners, entrepreneurs, early-stage startups, and a wide range of professional services providers. Launched in February 2021, ZEBOX AMERICA is led by Charley Dehoney, a veteran entrepreneur and recognized transportation, supply chain, and logistics technology expert.

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LOGISTICS

DealerOn partners with DRAIVER, an AI Powered Logistics platform with a nationwide on-demand vehicle delivery marketplace of drivers.

DealerOn | March 03, 2022

DealerOn and DRAIVER announced a strategic partnership today that will give dealers a turnkey solution for test drives and vehicle delivery that is fully integrated into the online shopping process through DealerOn's Apex digital retailing tool. The agreement brings together DealerOn, the leader in automotive websites, with DRAIVER, the number one logistics platform, on-demand driver marketplace and vehicle delivery system. The process of moving inventory around is wildly inefficient and costly for dealers, DRAIVER comes to the dealer's rescue by offering a solution that pairs dealers with vetted drivers that can get cars into the hands of car shoppers without the overhead. The direct integration with DealerOn's Apex means it's never been easier for our mutual dealership customers to ensure test drives are quick and easy." DealerOn CEO Ali Amirrezvani. When using Apex to browse a dealership's inventory, customers have a safe and easy way to have any vehicle delivered to them for a test drive. DRAIVER is thrilled to partner with DealerOn, giving us the opportunity to integrate our AI powered vehicle delivery platform combined with our national marketplace of vetted and insured drivers directly with DealerOn, whose new products are poised to be the standard for online retailing will provide our mutual client dealerships the best-in-class tools and services they need to compete in today's digital retail and home delivery marketplace." Anthony Monteiro CRO at DRAIVER About DealerOn DealerOn is the leader in automotive digital marketing, providing dealerships with platforms scientifically engineered to generate more leads than the competition, to crafting a web presence as personal as each individual dealership. DealerOn has extensive partnerships with the biggest names in the industry from Ford to GM and looks forward to a long and fruitful collaboration with DRAIVER.

Read More

FREIGHT

ExFreight Launches Pioneering Digital Air Freight Service

ExFreight | March 03, 2022

ExFreight continues to lead the transportation industry with innovative online technology for shippers and transportation providers. ExFreight's newly launched instant, dynamic air freight rating and carrier booking functionality is a game-changing advancement within the sphere of air freight shipping. This latest release expands the existing digital functionality of ExFreight's instant rating, booking, and map-based tracking platform for trucking, ocean freight, and air freight services. Shippers can now obtain an instant air freight shipping quote rate across multiple carriers with real-time visibility of flight details and available capacity. Options can be sorted by price, transit time, and reliability. Bookings and space can be secured immediately via a direct connection with the respective carrier's air cargo management system along with receipt of space confirmation. This new functionality is the next step in the ongoing evolution of ExFreight's best of breed digital freight system. By applying advanced technology to time sensitive air freight shipping, customers are able to realize supply-chain efficiencies while avoiding antiquated methodologies of traditional freight forwarders. The days of sending email back and forth with a freight forwarder for a singular air freight rate and attempted booking are now over. No other transportation provider within the industry is able to provide instant door to door international air freight rates with multiple carrier and routing options coupled with space confirmations. This is augmented with up-front carrier reliability ratings, carbon emission estimates and the optional addition of cargo insurance. Lastly, shippers are able to login to a central dashboard to access active shipment, carbon footprint, billing, and quote history reporting. On an individual shipment basis, highly detailed information is provided that shows every step of the shipment plan and process throughout the cargo journey. Our existing system functionality has been enhanced once again to provide shippers with a valuable tool to facilitate their supply-chain needs. Utilization of our online system continues to provide a distinct competitive advantage to our customers and partners." CEO Charles Marrale

Read More

LOGISTICS

TRAC INTERMODAL TEAMS WITH ZEBOX TO TRANSFORM TRANSPORTATION AND LOGISTICS

TRAC Intermodal | March 01, 2022

TRAC Intermodal, the largest marine chassis provider in the United States, today announced its new partnership with ZEBOX, the international accelerator and innovation hub for the supply chain, logistics, and Industry 4.0 spaces. Committed to fostering talent and supporting technological innovation, ZEBOX's mission is forging connections between disruptive startups and established industry leaders accelerating sustainable innovation to transform the global supply chain. Working together, TRAC and ZEBOX will create opportunities for high-impact innovation and accelerate the digital transformation of global supply chains. Created in 2018 by Rodolphe Saade, Chairman and CEO of the CMA CGM group, a world leader in shipping and logistics, the ZEBOX network supports startups throughout their development by helping them to rapidly scale and gain exposure in the international community. The industry-leading companies that comprise the ZEBOX network similarly gain important opportunities to collaborate and benefit from the innovations developed by startups in their respective sectors. At ZEBOX, we strongly believe in the power of collaborations between large companies and startups. That's why it's so important to us to build close relationships with corporate partners who are leaders in their field, TRAC has been a pioneer in providing intermodal solutions for nearly half a century. Their leadership, insights, and guidance will add great value not only for startups, but also for the core members of our international network." Charley Dehoney, Vice-President of ZEBOX America. Since our founding, TRAC has set the standard for quality, reliability and innovation in intermodal transportation, Our partnership with ZEBOX provides an invaluable opportunity to help chart the future for our industry and meet supply chain challenges head-on by tapping into some of the brightest young minds, innovative engineering designs, and breakthrough technologies coming out of the startup community." Daniel Walsh, President and CEO at TRAC Intermodal. Launched in Marseille, France, ZEBOX now also operates innovation hubs in the Caribbean area, in Guadeloupe, and in Arlington, Va., at National Landing, the first 5G smart city at scale in the United States and a prime environment for startups on the cutting edge of robotics, augmented reality, artificial intelligence, and autonomous mobility. More locations will be soon announced. 55 startups have already been supported by ZEBOX, and the first call for applications dedicated to ZEBOX AMERICA has just been launched. About ZEBOX ZEBOX is a global incubator and accelerator dedicated to fostering innovation by forging compelling collaborations between early-stage startups and corporate stakeholders. Created in 2018 by Rodolphe Saadé, Chairman and CEO of CMA CGM Group, a world leader in shipping and logistics, ZEBOX enables the supply chain of the future by focusing on two key segments: Transportation/logistics and Industry 4.0. ZEBOX accelerates digitalization, automation, and sustainability by harnessing new technologies including AI, IoT, Big Data, and robotics. Led by Massimo Magnifico, an expert in startup incubator management, ZEBOX is building a diverse ecosystem bringing together stakeholders including corporate partners, entrepreneurs, early-stage startups, and a wide range of professional services providers. Launched in February 2021, ZEBOX AMERICA is led by Charley Dehoney, a veteran entrepreneur and recognized transportation, supply chain, and logistics technology expert.

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