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Tailor-made workstations

10 June 2021

Key to achieving efficiency gains in fashion logistics is intelligent and ergonomic workstation design, an area in which KNAPP has channelled its significant expertise.

THE FASHION INDUSTRY – whether bricks-and-mortar, pureplay or omnichannel retail – is increasingly turning to warehouse automation to meet consumer expectations, secure economies and grow market share. As well as an enhanced customer experience through greater availability of stock, higher picking accuracy and faster delivery, intralogistics automation secures the benefits of improved efficiency, optimal use of space and flexibility to handle peaks.

Understanding that workstation design is a key element in achieving efficiency gains in fashion intralogistics, KNAPP has used its considerable know-how and experience to create a range of solutions to suit various business needs. The common thread in the company's Pick-it-Easy series of warehouse workstations is intelligent, ergonomic and multi-functional design. All items are presented within easy reach, according to the goods-to-person principle, to minimise effort and strenuous tasks for warehouse staff such as lifting, bending and reaching. The workstations feature optimised source and target load heights, inclination of containers towards employees and individually height-adjustable platforms. The Pick-it-Easy range has been developed using a biomechanical measuring system that uses sensors and motion capture technology to evaluate a series of parameters – including trunk inclination, head inclination, arm elevation and forearm rotation – in real time and under real conditions. This allows load forces, awkward posture and repetitive movements to be identified and measured against ergonomic criteria.

The Pick-it-Easy range has been developed using a biomechanical measuring system that uses sensors and motion capture technology.

All workstations in the range also feature KNAPP's easyUse user interface to make processing both simple and intuitive. With effective communication between man and machine, clients benefit from enhanced order accuracy – thereby minimising costly returns – and shorter training time required for new personnel. Software systems ensure that the Pick-it-Easy workstations receive an even workload distribution, with goods being supplied by an OSR Shuttle store (for flat-packed items) or an overhead conveyor system (for hanging garments or other items transported in suspended pockets).

KNAPP's Pick-it-Easy Pocket workstation can be paired with the company's Pick-it-Easy Pack workstation in order to merge flat-packed and hanging goods. Flat-packed items are transferred to pockets at a Pick-it-Easy Pocket workstation and – after sortation into the correct sequence for dispatch by the Pocket Sorter – these goods are then merged with hanging garments at a Pick-it-Easy Pack workstation. The task of pocket induction can also be performed by KNAPP's Pick-it-Easy Robot. In fact, any Pick-it-Easy station can be designed for robotic fulfilment from day one or a robot can be fitted retrospectively. Together, the Pick-it-Easy Pocket and Pick-it-Easy Pack workstations make a great team, processing a wide range of goods efficiently regardless of order structure. This means that the Pick-it-Easy Pocket and Pick-it-Easy Pack combo is ideal for multichannel and omnichannel applications, as well as for e-commerce.

The modular nature of KNAPP's Pick-it-Easy workstations means that the automation is scalable, giving retailers the flexibility to handle peaks – such as Black Friday and Christmas – more easily. Value-added services, such as gift-wrapping and the addition of marketing literature, can be integrated easily and packaging, labelling and sorting of dispatch cartons can also be handled fully automatically.

Fashion retailers benefiting from KNAPP's warehouse automation technologies include ASOS, Clarks, Decathlon, Hugo Boss, M&S, John Lewis, The Very Group and Zalando.

For more information, visit www.knapp.com