Numina Group to demonstrate order fulfillment automation technologies at MODEX 2016 Booth 4427

Jennifer Maloney
March 24, 2016

Numina Group to demonstrate order fulfillment automation technologies at MODEX 2016 Booth 4427

Numina Group, a leading supplier of Warehouse Execution and Control Systems, WES-WCS and independent warehouse systems integrator, offers over 30 years of experience in the design and implementation of automated warehouse and distribution centers. 

At MODEX, Numina Group’s latest order fulfillment and material handling technologies will be showcased in Booth #4427, including voice directed pick, pack, and ship automation featuring camera based inspection, carton dimensioning, pack sheet print-fold-insert, and print and apply labeling managed by Numina’s Real-time Distribution Software, RDS™ WES-WCS.

Voice Picking and Pick/Put to Light Automation

Pack Automation

  • Pick to Carton Reduces Touches in Packing
  • Slash Pack Labor and Material Costs
  • Auto Print-Fold-Insert Shipping Documents
  • Semi-automatic or Fully Automated Void and Seal

Shipping and Manifesting

  • In motion Scan-Weigh-Dimensioning, Vision Pack, and Ship Verification
  • Print and Apply labeling of Compliance, Packing Slips, and UPS, USPS, FedEx Shipping Labels
  • Automated Conveyor and Parcel, Pallet Build, and Order Fulfillment Sorting Systems

RDS is a powerful top-tier WES-WCS. It is a modular, scalable platform that includes all the tools needed for integrating Omni-channel Pick, Pack, and Ship automation. RDS Order Fulfillment modules provide flexible, scalable solutions to increase efficiency and productivity in distribution.

RDS Voice is superior technology for implementing lean, highly productive voice directed automated operations for manufacturing and distribution. It uses the world’s leading speaker-independent voice engine that requires zero operator voice training regardless of background noise. It improves accuracy to 99.9% in picking, kitting, receiving and replenishment applications, and increases productivity 25% or more.

Also to be showcased is the industry’s most advanced Print-Fold-Insert (PFI™) technology to automate printing and insertion of multiple 8.5” x 11” laser printed packing sheets into variable height shipment cartons. 

PFI™ is part of a highly advanced family of Numina Group’s print and insert, and/or print and apply labeling systems that automate packing and shipping applications. Print, fold and document insertion is supplied with conveyor systems and complementary technologies, including; in-line scan-weigh dimensioning, auto-taper sealers, and print and apply labeling, to automate Omni-channel, e-commerce, and other high volume pack and ship automation applications.

Numina Group’s warehouse automation engineers will be on hand in Booth 4427 to discuss answer questions. MODEX, “the Greatest Supply Chain Show on Earth” will be held this year in Atlanta, Georgia at the Georgia World Congress Center from April 4-7, 2016.

The customer had three initial questions about implementing a Voice Directed picking process.

  1. Would the upgrade require a significant and costly software investment from IT or a major wireless network to accommodate the voice messages generated by 250,000 transactions?
  2. Would the software connect with the existing WMS – JDA Merchandise Management?
  3. Most importantly, would they achieve the expected ROI?

All three concerns were readily alleviated due to the advantages of RDS’s WES-WCS Linux based voice solution! It can operate on virtually every hardware platform from dedicated servers, virtual servers, and private cloud-based servers.  

RDS Voice uses small network message packets, typically under 25K bytes per message, a fraction of the size compared to other voice picking technologies, for transmitting picking instructions and operator work completion confirmation messages.  

The client-server based voice solution is very lean with small, highly efficient messaging technology. It handles high volume picking transactions which minimally impacts the existing facility wireless network.

To answer their second question, Numina explained that RDS software is a top tier WES-WCS platform with thousands of installations that bolt on to virtually any existing ERP or WMS. Adding the improved processes to the clients JDA WMS on the IBM I-Series AS-400 platform was achieved using an RDS pre-developed interface.

The answer to the third question, can RDS Voice deliver a one-year ROI, was evident after the conclusion of the successful pilot. The work force had never used voice picking. The customer had doubts about the estimated ROI and the adaption of voice by their workers. The pilot was initially conducted with 20 pickers, and after the initial success, the trial period was expanded to 40 pickers.

The goal, to raise average picks by 30 percent per hour, from 195 lines to 257 lines, was soon exceeded. “We had to prove to ourselves that we could get a 30% productivity gain during the pilot before we added the entire workforce. 

This goal was achieved, and several additional enhancements were identified that would provide even higher productivity when we added the entire workforce” stated the operation manager.

During the pilot, a 20% productivity increase occurred in the first day due to the speaker independent voice technology that requires zero operator voice training.  

Within just a few weeks the workforce had exceeded the 30% goal and went above a 35% productivity increase with the highest performing workers achieving a 60% productivity increase. Picking accuracy across the team averaged 99.96%. 

Voice-directed picking combined with hands-free scanning accounts for 5-10% added productivity with a typical boost in accuracy of .5% compared to voice only picking applications.

RDS Voice includes labor management and reporting that further boosts workforce performance. It adds operator accountability through Web based labor management tools that record the accuracy and the performance of each of the approximately 100 operators. 

Management is able to view operational productivity from any PC, tablet, or portable device, and can see real-time production statistics for any worker. Views and reports provide feedback of workers that display individual and team hourly and daily production results. 

This real time reporting capability is a useful tool to recognize and reward workers that exceed their goals.

“Once we started tracking the labor productivity measurements, we saw that some of our associates were just really excelling at it,” said the company’s operation manager.  

“This prompted us to put in an incentive policy for our workers, so if they maintain an accuracy level of at least 99.6 percent. If they reach at least a 30% higher productivity level than the designated standards, they qualify as a voice professional (VP) which earns them recognition within the order picking team, as well as a wage increase as part of our bonus plan.”

For information about how to increase productivity by 35% or more in your distribution center, contact an engineer.

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