Debunking the Myths of Warehouse Automation

April 17, 2020 2:18 pm

In a world where robotics continues to advance every day, the automation of warehouses is an obvious implementation of this new technology, creating a more efficient and organized environment. However, some companies have reservations about these advancements, and question whether an automated system would be right for them. Ultimately, these reservations stem from misconceptions and myths about automation for heavy duty shelving, and in many warehouses, it can be affordable, laborsaving, and a push into a successful future.

One concern is that employees may not take to the new system, distrusting it or worrying it might be unsafe. But a properly installed automated system should not pose any risk factor to any employee, and frequently, the more an employee works with one, the more they understand that automation is a huge boon and time saver for their workday. For instance, if warehouse demands have increased to the need for large scale storage, such as our heavy duty shelving which can support up to 4 levels, employees have a great deal of ground to cover and weight to move. Automation can only be of assistance in this situation. Warehouse workers will move a fraction of the distance and carry far less product themselves, creating a more efficient and safer environment.

Another common concern is that the system could be hard to operate or expensive to install in heavy duty storage shelves, but with advancements in automation in recent years, this is an issue of the past. The first automated storage and retrieval system was installed by the Japanese company Daifuku in 1966, and Amazon built their first automated warehouse all of eight years ago. Automation technology is better and more user friendly than it ever has been, and a warehouse doesn’t need a specific engineer on staff to have a system that is well maintained and accessible. A fleet of robots can be helpful with little training required for employees to understand and maintain them.

Lastly, many might think they need to revamp their entire warehouse and its system or even wait until they establish a new warehouse to incorporate automation, thinking it will be difficult to make changes after the system is in place. However, again due to progress made in the technology, these systems are malleable and will largely adapt to what a warehouse has and needs. Changes after a system is installed are possible and user friendly.  Most systems do not require overly specific set ups and can work with any sort of warehouse storage system, including our custom made heavy duty industrial shelving.

The amount of money saved by an automated system can be in the tens of thousands, starting as soon as they are installed. Prolonging the decision to automate a warehouse is only prolonging savings. Contact WPSS to learn more about our robotic-friendly shelving systems.

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