Latest Technology in the Cold Storage Warehouse Part 1: Voice Technology
Market trends indicate that consumers:
- Are more health conscious and prefer locally sourced food as well as artisan and ethnically diverse food products
- Prefer freshly prepared foods over that of food products that are highly processed
- Have special dietary concerns (gluten-free, lactose intolerance, vegan, etc.)
- Are concerned about animal welfare, environmental impact and sustainability issues
- Want multiple delivery options and expect fast, low cost delivery
Although most cold storage warehouse companies use a warehouse management system, not all systems can meet the challenge of multi-level product handling. Today, refrigerated warehouses need to be able to receive goods by the pallet, break them down, pick by each then pack it up and get it to the store. Having a WMS that can interface directly with the client can help develop a stronger relationship and provide greater leverage.
Here is a Look at Some of the Technologies Being Used in Refrigerated & Cold Storage Warehouses:
Cold storage warehouse operations are some of the toughest in the supply chain logistics industry. Managing labor costs with the required staffing as efficiently and productively as possible in tough working conditions is often a daily battle.
Mobile devices are equipped with an exclusive identification chip and initial voice conditioning takes 20 to 30 minutes. As the voice technology system is used on an ongoing basis, it refines and continually updates each worker’s voice profile.
Voice technology typically supports a wide variety of languages, speech pattern solutions and dialects. The warehouse workforce can usually be trained in less than one day by shadowing another worker.
Case Study: Vocollect and Burris Logistics
The seventh largest cold storage third party logistics distribution company in the U.S., Burris Logistics is a fifth-generation supply chain business.
In servicing many “household name” clients, Burris Logistics is expected to bring added value, provide outstanding service and handle accurate, on-time deliveries as efficiently as possible. Burris Logistics credits Vocollect for being instrumental in its success in providing continually high levels of service. Vocollect captures actual results that can then be compared to the work-job standard rate to provide insight into worker performance. This insight has proven useful by providing an accurate picture of workforce performance, key to the company’s incentive program.
The Result: Vocollect Voice was instrumental in improving Burris Logistics’ operational efficiencies, improved inventory and order accuracy as well as customer service and worker safety. Additional improvements include inventory tracking, strong measurement capacity Vocollect Voice delivers, time and cost savings. An added benefit is the improvement in the quality of work life for non-native English-speaking Burris Logistics warehouse workers. By enabling warehouse workers to respond to the voice control system in their native language, workers are more comfortable and productive.
3PL cold storage and refrigerated warehouse operators are relying on technology to help meet the needs of consumers, keep costs down, help meet regulatory requirements for food safety and other issues.
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