The Right Voice Picking Solution Eliminates Shipment Errors in Your DC

Jennifer Maloney
February 7, 2020

You see a watch online. You buy it. You select next-day shipping and pay ten dollars extra. Your watch arrives three days later…and it’s the wrong color!  When that scenario happens, it frustrates customers and diminishes repeat purchases. Research estimates that the costs of miss-picks can drain profits of $400,000 per year from an E-com or B2C order fulfillment operation.

In the age of the Internet World, time and accuracy in order fulfillment operations are critical drivers to same-day delivery deadlines. All DC operations desire speed and zero error picking due to increased cost competition. With a few search commands, customers can shop virtually any product price and delivery, and if your DC wants to compete you must be able to fulfill more orders in less time, at the highest accuracy and lowest cost per order fulfillment method. The days of a DC relying on a paper-based or a mobile barcode terminal and manual data entry process are over. It is not only slow and inefficient, but it is also a source of errors. Statistics show that 1 in every 35 terminal based data entries can result in an error.

As leaders in warehouse automation, Numina Group’s RDS Voice™ Suite is designed to include several tools that enforce efficient and highly accurate order fulfillment processes. RDS Voice™ can boost accuracy up to 99.9% with increased speeds, without extensive operator training. By enhancing accurate productivity, RDS Voice™ can:

  • Secure a brand’s trustworthy identity
  • Meet same-day delivery expectations
  • Reduce labor costs 
  • Reduce retailer chargebacks
  • Stop errors from leaving the DC

Why RDS™ Voice? The Answer is Obvious.

To further illustrate the capabilities of RDS Voice™Numina Group CEO, Dan Hanrahan, explains the opportunities voice-picking can provide to your operation.

What makes voice picking indispensable in today’s operations?

Voice technology combined with hands-free barcode scanning has been shown to yield some of the highest performances and productivity gains in the industry. That’s because it directs your workers in a uniform manner, enforcing lean improved picking practices. Voice plus hands-free barcode data capture drives and measures order processing times. Order processing and labor are measured and reported; resulting in faster and lower error operations.

What’s are the top obstacles warehouses eliminate with RDS Voice™?

Inconsistent operator productivity and inability to enforce and measure accuracy and labor. Even the best employees in a DC relying on paper-based order release and an operator picking by paper or paper and a mobile tablet or barcode terminal-based picking system will be limited by having to rely on tribal knowledge, keying in data, and switching to different screens. Those processes will slow down the operator and can produce a 1-2 % error rate! No DC can survive this error rate, so the operation will require almost a 100% secondary quality check of order picking, deploying close to the same amount of labor to QC orders in the packing operation. 

The RDS Voice™ Suite includes several combined software modules to deliver best in class performance single touch pick and pack, including; order release optimization to direct a batch order picking process in each picking, and cartonization logic to direct pick and pack directly to the shipping carton. Additionally, the software suite prioritizes orders and directs more efficient fork truck, batch order cart and conveyor-based walk/travel paths to eliminate wasted order processing time. Combining several parameters to optimize and manage several parallel order picking strategies can result in up to double the operation’s order picking rates.

The Zebra RS5100 finger mounted camera-based ring-scanner can rapidly scan items

RDS Voice is multi-modal – combining voice directions with hands-free barcode scan verification of pick location and product barcode and or voice prompts, directing lot serial data capture and keeping the operators working in a hands-free, eyes focused work environment – free of paper or handheld terminals.  The pickers wear the latest generation Zebra 5100 finger mounted camera-based ring-scanners to rapidly scan items. Voice confirms the required quantity picked. 

How hard is it for workers to adjust to this new picking system?

With RDS Voice™ new employees become instantly productive

RDS Voice™ is simple to use, requiring zero voice training and requiring only a handful of voice commands to master. Minimal training of about 30 minutes means less management time onboarding employees, so a new employee becomes instantly productive. This allows temporary workers during peak periods and seasons to be productive on day one!

What are some considerations customers should consider before implementing a voice picking solution?

Before implementing voice, we start with assessing a client’s current operation, to lean-up the processes and uncover and resolve operational bottlenecks and throughput constraints. We use our firm’s three-plus decades of warehouse automation expertise to create and define an efficient pick, pack, and ship operation that minimizes labor usage and eliminates wasted touches across the entire operation.

How does the Numina Group help clients successfully integrate a voice solution?

Before launching any automation initiative, we collaborate with the customers to define the project and performance metrics goals. We review and agree upon the processes, pick-rates, and the automation investment objectives. These are written into the description of the operation, including the system acceptance test plan. The solution requires a plan to measure and verify success – results achieved or expectations exceeded.

To explore the benefits of RDS Voice to drive and enforce improved productivity and accuracy across your entire order fulfillment operation, contact Numina Group today for a free consultation on how our voice suite will increase customer satisfaction, improve profitability by eliminating costly miss-picks and missed shipments once and for all.

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