Warehouse automation can help modern businesses run more efficiently, reliably and accurately. It can also help them gain a competitive advantage in the marketplace. Here are some of the top emerging trends in warehouse automation:
Robots may be able to lift heavier, work longer and skip breaks, but often people are better at decision-making and analysis. Many warehouses are designed to incorporate the best of both worlds by having robots working alongside people to optimize the strengths of each.
Turning warehouse tasks into games can provide incentives for employees work more productively with robots. Dashboards and other tools can help employers set up game-like activities and offer prizes to the employee who fills the most orders or completes the most assemblies.
Automatic Guided Vehicles
Automatic guided vehicles, or AGVs, are a major trend in warehouse automation. They use magnets, lasers and/or vison sensors to navigate around warehouse facilities and move items. AGVs can also follow wires or markers in the floor. Amazon currently uses 100,000 such robots to automate picking and packaging in its warehouses.
Packaging and Shelving Design
As more and more companies use AGVs and other robots in their warehouses, packaging and shelving designs have changed to better accommodate the new tools. For example, boxes and bins are being designed to make it easier for robots to move them around freely.
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