The ongoing pandemic has put industries at risk, prompting companies to innovate by investing in warehouse automation. According to the Honeywell Integrated Automation Investment Study, the following industries are inclined to adopt warehouse automation the most:
- E-commerce (66%)
- Grocery, food and beverage (59%)
- Logistics (55%)
Chris Feuell, Chief Marketing Officer at Honeywell Integrated, explained that COVID-19 has forced the supply chain industry to incorporate remote operations and follow social distancing.
The latest consumer studies reveal that online purchases have increased by 28% across the globe. Similarly, the buy online/pick up-in store model is gaining traction – it is expected to increase by 60% in 2020.
The modern customer is looking for brands to provide seamless integration between in-store and online shopping buying, shopping, and delivery experience. To resolve their woes, organisations have decided to adapt by establishing micro-fulfilment strategies. Automated solutions are improving the accuracy and speed of order processing, fulfilment, and delivery. In addition, companies are benefiting from higher productivity and ROI.
Today, automation offers a terrific opportunity to enhance operations, especially in scenarios where manual labor is unable to contribute due to physical limitations. Embracing computer-controlled equipment, guided work solutions, and robotic technology is found to be critical by organisations to stay competitive in their industry. Currently, the three most common solutions for warehouse automation are listed below:
- Warehouse execution software (48%)
- Order picking technology (46%)
- Robotic solutions (44%)
Based on the current market sentiment, experts believe that a large chunk of IT budgets are going to be allocated for these software. Despite their need, only one in three companies has successfully implemented these solutions. So, which factor is discouraging them? Although most companies have found positive outcomes with automation, their cost remains the biggest barrier to further adoption.