Real time analysis of warehouse processes
22 May 2018
SSI Schaefer has released a new version of its labour and resource management system WAMAS LRM, which is described as quicker and more efficient.
The software is said to help usher intralogistics into a new era of optimised performance and guaranteed maximum information transparency. The intelligent system looks at everything from individual processes to the entire internal material flow in order to optimise procedures and productivity.
Schaefer showcased the software at the recent CeMAT event in Germany.
The company says: “This is the latest addition to the range of IT services based on the proprietary logistics software WAMAS. Whether as a standalone system linked to an existing WMS or as a built-in component of WAMAS, the LRM system captures data on the total productivity of all intralogistics employees, but also the performance of the warehouse itself.”
Data can be analysed individually, in groups, or by shift productivity. Following indepth analysis of the data, WAMAS LRM aims to help optimise the use of all resources to enhance the efficiency of day-to-day running of the warehouse. WAMAS LRM is already proving itself in a number of customer systems where the transparency it delivers has successfully boosted efficiency, says Schaefer.
The company anticipates WAMAS LRM will deliver productivity gains somewhere in the region of two percentage points. It will also add procedural and process analyses plus optimisation to its stable of logistics services.
The new model from Schaefer calculates all distances that have to be covered and the resulting transit and lifting times in the warehouse. Depending on the transport devices used or the walking speed of the warehouse staff, the system divides every warehouse process into freely definable blocks of time. Target times for each activity are then compared with the actual times in order to calculate productivity, evaluate it in real time, and to compare and analyse value-adding and non value-adding work.
The company says efficiency-boosting workforce management systems are proving to be a decisive commercial advantage in highly competitive markets. Due to the constantly increasing volumes that have to be handled in warehouses and retrieval quantities that vary enormously due to promotional events such as "Black Friday", the pressure on warehouse operators is also increasing.
“This trend makes the efficient use and swift provision of resources, as well as indepth monitoring of productivity, more important than ever. It also means that even bigger intralogistics systems and more staff are required," adds Bauer-Kieslinger, executive VP of IT solutions.
“Generally speaking, the bigger the workforce in the warehouse, the more attractive a sophisticated workforce management system becomes.”
The IT experts at SSI Schaefer are pursuing a long-term vision in WAMAS LRM and are already working on ways to develop the system further – by ensuring a seamless combination of automated and human performance. In future, not only will all work processes carried out by warehouse employees be captured, but those of machines too, says the firm. It will then be possible to take this into account when planning the ideal combination of material handling devices and human workforce. In the next step, warehouse throughput and resulting workload forecasts will support detailed staff and workplace planning, tailored to every single warehouse.