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Advantages of Pick-to-Light (and put-to-light)

3 minute read

Pick-to-light systems increase pick productivity, improve accuracy, reduce order cycle times, optimize batch and cluster picking, increase customer satisfaction, and enable the tracking of key performance indicators (KPIs) for continuous process improvement. Newer, wireless IoT picking systems, such as Voodoo Robotics' Cloud Display Devices, have additional advantages.

 

Pick-to-Light Advantages

 

Increased Picking Productivity

Light (and sound) help warehouse pickers locate the correct items on their pick-lists quickly, boosting pick productivity by up to 50% over paper-picking methods. 

Pick-to-light systems also reduce walking time and some even provide optimized path planning, resulting in additional productivity gains. 

 

Improved Accuracy

Picking accuracy rates improve and mispicks are reduces when operators both pick the correct item and put the item in the correct tote, bin, or other location.  Improving picking accuracy reduces costly mispicks that lead to re-shipping, return-shipping, returns processing, and ultimately poor customer service.  Inaccurate picking not only damages your reputation but also has a significant impact on your margins and bottom line.  

 

Reduced Employee Training Time

Light-directed picking lowers the learning curve and training time for new employees.  Pick-to-light systems create an environment in which pickers or warehouse operators do not have to have an detailed knowledge of the warehouse and products stored in each location.  Pick-lights direct any employee to the correct location with minimal training.  Some systems, such as Cloud Display Devices, which use a text-based display, can instruct the pickers in almost any language.  

 

Optimized Batch and Cluster Picking

Optimize batch and cluster picking by accurately and efficiently picking multiple orders in one pass through the warehouse.  Newer picking and putting systems include path planning to further optimize picking by directing pickers along the most efficient path.  Lights can be installed on racks and on the picking cart.  For example, a pick-light, installed on a rack indicates which item should be picked.  When the picker acknowledges the pick, a put-light on the cart indicates which bin or tote where the item should be placed.  

 

Reduce Order Cycles Times

Order Cycle Time is a key performance indicator (KPI) that measures the time between when an order is placed to when it is delivered.  Shorter order cycle times positively impact a business' ability to attract and retain customers.

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Pick-to-light and put-to-light systems allow you to fill more orders in less time with fewer resources, thereby boosting your order cycle time.

 

Track Picking Key Performance Indicators (KPIs)

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Once you can measure picklist initiation and pick acknowledgement, you have access to a whole slate of order fulfillment metrics such as fill rate, pick rate productivity, and more.  You can even determine and reward the fastest or most accurate pickers and figure out which operators are underperforming.  

 

Increased Customer Service

Shipping the right product in a timely manner results in increased customer service. A study by MHI shows that 39% of retail companies face challenges with inaccurate order delivery dates.  Pick-to-light technology streamlines the order fulfillment process, allowing you to ship more orders faster, resulting in increased customer service.

 

Wireless IoT Pick-to-Light by Voodoo Robotics

Cloud Display Device for the the warehouse or DC

Cloud Display Device URL

 

A simple URL causes the associated Cloud Display Device to light up with two lines of text in almost any language.  Devices are self-monitored and run on two AA batteries that can last for years, depending on usage.  Integration is so simple, it even works with Google Sheets or Excel.  

 

Additional Advantages of Voodoo Robotics Pick-to-Light

 

Text Display

Sixteen character alphanumeric display tells the picker exactly which item needs to be picked or placed by the SKU, description, color, or other information.

 

CAPEX vs OPEX

Hardware as a service allows you to shift from Capital Expenditure (CAPEX) to operational Expenditure (OPEX).

 

Upward and Downward Scalability

Lease precisely the number of lights required each month – permitting both upward and downward scalability in your fulfillment operation.

 

Integrates with Any Modern WMS/ERP

A simple URL causes the Cloud Display Devices to light up with any two lines of text and also allows for simple integration with any modern WMS/ERP.

 

Wireless and Internet of Things (IoT) Technology

Wireless devices can be moved and reconfigured easily.  They light up, displaying any two lines of text and can be used for picking-by-light, put-to-light, order sortation, batch picking, picking carts, flow racks, put-walls, quarantine, kitting, and more!

 

Learn more about pick-to-light and put-to-light in the 2018 Buyer's Guide to Put-to-Light, which covers types of systems, advantages, costs, implementation and more.

 

2018 Buyer's Guide to Put-to-Light