Picking stock is usually the warehouse activity with the highest cost. Fast accurate picking methods are essential in lowering operating costs.
Pick and Pack Together
Pick and Pack may be separated into two separate functions, or combined into a single function by picking items directly into the despatch carton. New cartons may be introduced during the picking stream at any time and earlier cartons may be reopened to add more items.
SSCC carton labels may be pre-printed, or printed during picking. At commencement of picking into a carton, the label barcode is scanned to nominate the correct carton. Alternately, a carton sequence number may be entered and labels printed at the conclusion of picking.
Pick Multiple Orders Simultaneously
Multiple orders may be picked on the RF Terminal at the same time. The optimal pick path is calculated for all orders simultaneously, reducing the total walking and travelling times for picking.
When picking slips are printed for non-RF manual picking, multiple orders may be selected for printing on a single picking slip. The locations are sorted on the picking slip in an optimal picking path for all orders.
Full cartons may be picked for several orders simultaneously, using labels. SEQOS generates the required number of carton labels for each item in a multi-order batch. The operator attaches each label to the designated carton in one pass through the pick area.
Voice-Directed Putaway and Picking
With suitable RF Terminal equipment, SEQOS sends audible instructions for Putaway and Picking to the operator. The operator verbally responds, or scans barcodes.
This feature can improve putaway and picking times by reducing the need for the operator to visually check the RF screen, and allowing the operator to use both hands for handling the stock. The downside is that the operator may need to listen to the entire instruction before proceeding, which, in some contexts, can be slower than reading the screen.
Pick-to-light, Put-to-light, and Carousels
Pick-to-light increases the pick rate productivity, accuracy and cost efficiency by reducing walk time, eliminating reading errors and simplifying the task throughout the pick process. When an order is scanned in at a bay of pick-to-light locations, the quantity to pick from each location is illuminated on a pick-to-light display at that location. Each bay of pick-to-light locations may be divided into subsections. Those subsections can be readily moved between adjacent bays throughout the day to reduce bottlenecks within bays on the picking line.
Put-to-light is also supported in SEQOS, where items are placed into customer shipping cartons for orders, according to the displayed quantities on the put-to-light system.
Using a combination of pick-to-light, put-to-light and carousels, each item to be picked is brought to the operator by the carousel, instead of the operator walking to the item. Using SEQOS carousel picking, the total quantity of an item for several orders is displayed on a pick-to-light system in front of a carousel pickface. The operator places the required quantities displayed on the put-to-light system for each order into the customer shipping cartons. Carousel picking is more efficient if a pair of adjacent carousels is used. While the operator is picking an item from one carousel, the other carousel is moving to the next pickface. The operator then picks from that other carousel while the first carousel moves to the next pickface.
Pickface near Despatch Area
Slotting the fastest moving products near the despatch area reduces the total time for the day’s picking. SEQOS analyses product throughput and assigns the fastest-moving products to pickfaces or locations near the despatch area, with the slowest-moving products furthest from the despatch area.
Using the SEQOS Automated Task Queue on RF Terminals, SEQOS greatly reduces unproductive travelling time by interleaving dissimilar tasks based on location proximity, task priority, operator, forklift equipment and operator task permission.
The operator may, for example, be instructed to putaway stock from the receiving dock into a storage location, followed by a replenishment, followed by a bulk-pick movement to the despatch area before returning to the receiving dock to putaway more stock.
Ease Of Use
Consistent user interface and consistent use of keyboard function keys throughout all SEQOS functions enables operators to learn the system quickly and to use it efficiently.
Consistency between different software versions of SEQOS ensures that operators do not need retraining with SEQOS new-version releases.
Operators can easily navigate from a screen to related screens and functions.
Productivity monitoring is essential for the operation of any business to ensure that service levels are met, to ensure that budgeted operational costs are not exceeded, and for refining and improving processes.
The SEQOS graphical monitor (or dashboard) allows management to immediately identify congestion and delays for any warehouse task, and to make informed decisions for moving staff to smooth the workflow.
Chart and graphs may be generated to compare operational processes, employee performance, order throughput and vendor performance over a range of days and times.
The Productivity Report measures productive and idle times for order processing and other transactions, showing the percentage of productive time for comparing employee’s performance.