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Technology is changing business at an astonishing rate. New technologies such as augmented reality and ever more sophisticated stock control systems mean that the humble warehouse may look remarkably different in the future, but how can you harness this in your business in order to give you a competitive edge? Here at Spaceway, as a leader in the field of warehouse development, we have a few ideas that may help you to get more from your warehouse.
Every business in the world wants to be more efficient; rising wages and tough competition mean that every ingredient of your business is important. Looking at today’s major players, you can see a clear move towards technological efficiency. Chief among these companies is the retail behemoth Amazon. With an incredible array of stock, Amazon has the sort of logistics nightmares that can barely even be conceived. The location of their stock across numerous warehouses and even countries mean that inventory control is key to their business. This high level of control is the reason that a huge number of their products can be delivered the next day from various different parts of the country. But how do they do it? They make the process straightforward for their operatives using technology.
Amazon’s success is built upon an idea that almost any business can take advantage of, that technology can increase efficiency. While it is unlikely that most businesses have the resources to match Amazon’s, amazing technology exists that can make even the most rudimentary warehouse more efficient. Systems such as Pick-to-light can give your warehouse operatives an easy and efficient process of lights to follow that can quickly guide them to the correct item. This high level of control ensures that order accuracy is high and importantly, customer complaints are kept to a minimum. Pick-to-light is just one of a number of systems that achieve this task, there are numerous alternatives that mean you can build efficiency into your warehouse system – increasing output and ROI.
While we have already covered what is available on the mainstream market today, what about tomorrow? As Augmented Reality (an alternative to Virtual Reality that overlays information over what the user can see) technologies improve exponentially, their role in the business world is likely to increase. Many companies already use Augmented Reality and Virtual Reality in a number of ways, one of the most common is training staff across locations. For large multinationals, being widespread has obvious benefits, but when you need to train staff across locations, technology can help to interact directly with staff from any location.
So how can Augmented Reality be used in a warehouse? One simple way is drawing maps on a users headset. In almost every warehouse and every situation, there is an optimum route around the warehouse, by overlaying the optimum path onto the user’s headset, an operatives efficiency can be optimised. There is also the potential for minimised picking inaccuracies – a bugbear for any business. These systems can also help to pinpoint exactly what operatives are doing at any point and ensures that efficiency is optimised.
While clearly the introduction of Augmented Reality and highly advanced stock inventory systems may not be ideal for every business, almost any warehouse can be improved by the use of technology. Getting the right product to the right customer at the right time is key to long-term success, the introduction of these systems can help to ensure that this happens on a much more consistent basis. The efficiency gains and improved customer retention could mean that the systems offer a quick ROI. While all of this may seem pie in the sky, the frightening increase in the pace of these systems coming to market means that not only will they become the norm, they will also become better value for money.
So while your warehouse may be running perfectly well, is there a way in which it can be improved? The biggest companies are making the most of new technology, and with reduced costs and improving ROI, maybe it is time to start incorporating some of these ideas into today’s warehouses. Whatever you decide, Spaceway can help you to make the most of the opportunities that technology brings to help support your growth, and that can only be a good thing. If you want to discuss ways to improve the efficiency of your warehouse, call Spaceway today on 0800 085 1022 to talk to our in-house design team about taking your warehouse to the next level.
We're very impressed with the Spaceway team and the whole project was installed without fault. We are looking forward to working with the team again.
It’s no good having just an empty industrial building you need a concept for space, a design, an infrastructure and someone to build it. Designing something like this from scratch with someone who’s willing to invest in your ideas, Spaceway is your perfect partner.
The office fit out is superbly finished to the highest standards and beyond our expectations.
Another project well done by Spaceway. As before, we're very pleased with everything from concept through to completion.
Thank you to Spaceway for the improvements that have been made to move Bodywise forward. You've done a very good job and we look forward to working with you again.
The project was challenging to say the least with the removal of 280 workstations and fitting of 400 new ones, along with collaboration areas and 400 bespoke lockers over two weekends, but Spaceway managed to complete this along with office refurbishment works on time and to an excellent standard.
“I was so happy I did not get bothered throughout the extensive works and that a strict timetable was completed flawlessly. Fantastic experience all round.”
MD, ALPMA UK
"I’m very pleased how they’ve gone through it all and actioned it and they’ve got good depth of resource, good depth of people, and good skilled people who work well and tightly and good communication. So I’m delighted."
We were delighted with the service from Spaceway.
The project was designed to meet our specific requirements which included fitting in 20 more additional workstations using the existing space. The design works well and has met our expectations fully, we will continue to use Spaceway, they do a good job.
Plastimo UK Limited
We are delighted with the finished product. The space has been turned into an exceptional working environment, which will serve us well for years to come
Our project was finished on time and to budget in what was a very short timescale, which is a credit to the team at Spaceway!
Spaceway worked with us to create the perfect environment for our staff. The completed project was fantastic and utilised the space to provide practical, modern and attractive working surroundings.