Sunday, May 23, 2010

Pick-to-Light

This video gives a first impression how Pick-to-light works:



What it is

Pick-by-Light or Pick-to-Light is being used for commissioning by companies like Carrefour, Día, Nike, Gear for Sports and Champion and many more. It offers diverse advantages compared to manual picking techniques which usually require the presence of bills of delivery or invoices when the picking takes place.

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Pick to Light is acknowledged to be the fastest operator-based picking strategy available to execute broken case quantity order fulfillment operations.
It is ideal for team-based approaches like zone picking.
It can increase the pick rate productivity, accuracy and cost efficiency of this labour intensive operation by reducing the walk time, eliminating the reading errors and simplifying the task throughout the pick process.
Make faster and better decision responses with real-time visibility into all important activities, events and productivity statistics in real-time, presented through a sophisticated GUI featuring complete reporting tools.

If you want to learn more about pick-by-light in general and about the leading company in this are, Lightning Pick, check out this link:
http://www.lightningpick.com/pickToLight.html



How it works

On Pick-by-Light-systems there is a signal light on each storage shelf with a display that shows nubers or also letters of the alphabet. Also there is at least one button for confirmation and sometimes buttons for numerical input or for corrections.



Whenever the picking box is at the picking position a signal is lighting at the storage shelf from which the employee has to take the products and on the display a number with the amount of items that have to be taken appears.
After having taken the products, the withdrawal is being confirmed with the button for confirmation and the inventory change is being transmitted in real time to the warehouse management system.



Pick-to-light solutions guide order pickers through display lights, LCD panels and entry keys mounted over pick faces. Specialized software controls the flow of information to and from pickers. Pick-to-light software is usually interfaced to a WMS or ERP in a near-real-time or batch mode. Pick-to-light solutions are typically employed to support zone pick. Generally, each user starts the process within his/her zone by scanning a bar-coded order or carton number. The software then activates the display lights above each location that has a pick and displays the pick quantity on the associated LCD panel. Each pick is acknowledged or adjusted through the location's entry key.

Advantages
  • Unbeatable simplification, reliability and flexibility.
  • A high degree of cost-effectiveness.
  • Maximum competitiveness in installation and maintenance costs.
  • Accuracy of operations, practically eliminating all possibility of error.
  • Increase in productivity.
  • Speed: operation time is significantly reduced.
  • Fewer workers are needed (up to 50% less).
  • Real-time information on order progress and status.
  • Real-time monitoring of the content of each case.
  • Improvement in system management and client service quality

In conclusion:

  • maximising the productivity of the operations
  • maximising the speed of the operations
  • maximising the efficiency of the operations
  • reducing errors to a minimum

Also see: http://www.ptlsystems.com/eng/articulos/articulo5.html

Disadvantages
  • cost
  • integration
  • functionality issues

Also see:
http://www.impomag.com/scripts/ShowPR.asp?RID=7755&CommonCount=0

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