The use of robotics in warehouses has increased significantly in recent years.
From the supply chain and distribution, through to warehouse management and maintenance, robotics is now playing a central role in warehouse automation. With constant advancements in technology, that’s only going to continue.
According to the UK Warehouse Robotics Readiness Report, industries that rely heavily on warehousing, including retails, ecommerce, and 3PL, must embrace large-scale automation and robotics to boost picking rates and accuracy, save valuable space, and keep up with the fast-paced growth of ecommerce.
But what are warehouse robotics and how can they benefit your business?
What are warehouse robotics?
Warehouse robotics are automation systems, robots and software that work together to carry out and automate certain warehouse management tasks, including:
Various types of robotics can be used in warehouses, the most common ones being:
Automated Guided Vehicles (AGVs)
AGVs can be used to move inventory and assets around the warehouse, replacing manually-driven forklifts and pick carts.
Automated Storage and Retrieval Systems (AS/RS)
These computer systems support the automation of inventory management and enable warehouses to store and retrieve goods on demand.
G2P technology uses an automated system to deliver items to pick stations, where human operators then complete the orders.
These semi-autonomous mobile robots provide support to human workers, as they perform tasks in the warehouse.
Articulated robotic arms
These multi-jointed arms can be used to move products round the warehouse. They are often used in picking, packing, storage, and palletising processes.
What are the benefits of warehouse robotics for your business?
The use of robotics can significantly increase productivity and accuracy, particularly when it comes to inventory management. By automating processes such as picking, sorting, and replenishing, warehouse robotics help to eliminate the risk of human errors, which can be costly and time consuming for businesses.
Reduced pressure on human workers
Certain warehouse tasks, such as working at height and transporting inventory, can be physically and mentally strenuous for warehouse workers. Warehouse robotics can take on some of these high-risk tasks, reducing strain and pressure on human workers which, in turn, boosts morale and productivity.
With robotics, warehouses can automate repetitive, manual tasks, freeing up human workers to focus on complex tasks that require human input. This increases efficiency and accuracy.