Online business is booming and now, as events such as Christmas or Black Friday loom, the electronic shopping baskets are rapidly filling up. This poses an enormous challenge for the parcel and distribution centers that have to handle this massive increase in traffic. USPS stated it expected an overall quantity of 800 million parcels between this year's Thanksgiving Day and New Year’s Day. The overall holiday season figure would be about 50 million parcels more than in the same period last year, a six percent increase.*
Here are our six suggestions for organizing your parcel and distribution center logistics so that you can take such peak in demand from e-commerce in your stride.
1. Intuitive operation
Nothing works without enough staff and in order to deal with the flood of parcels generated during the peak e-commerce periods you usually need to run extra shifts and hire additional (wo)manpower. However, this only helps if your company’s systems are really intuitive to operate and user-friendly. Sorting systems such as the BÖWE SYSTEC OptiSorter coupled with virtually self-explanatory BÖWE Sort software can reduce to a minimum the time it takes to bring even untrained workers up to speed, meaning that extra staff can work productively right from the word go.
2. Flexible systems
From naught to a hundred just before the festivities? That’s already the case. However, in the mid to long term parcel volumes are forecast to rise aside from the peak times, and so when companies are thinking of configuring or reconfiguring their parcel and distribution centers they already need to be considering flexible hard- and software solutions. It’s important to invest in sorting systems that can be adjusted to requirements and expanded. The modular design of the OptiSorter means that it can be precisely tailored to the space available and it can be upgraded at any time. What’s more, its Push-Tray technology is able to handle the most varied of items – from business cards to banana boxes and from lipsticks to bags of dog food – gently and reliably. Items from abroad that do not comply with standard parcel formats can be processed automatically, too. When it comes to smaller and lighter items, there is now the new OptiSorter Split-Tray, which is also able to automatically sort flexible packages such as polybags and the like.
3. Transparent logistics
Patience is not a virtue consumers are known for. No sooner has something been ordered than they want it, and, if at all possible, it needs to be delivered the next day. Even same day deliveries are no longer the exception. All of this makes high performance, flexible and future-proof intralogistics, Warehouse Management and Warehouse Control Systems a must. BÖWE SYSTEC warehouse solutions can optimize your internal logistics to deliver faster throughput and total transparency.
4. The right level of automation
Automating processes can of course shorten throughput times and increase productivity and BÖWE SYSTEC solutions can automate the entire parcel sorting process chain. However, sometimes you can have too much of a good thing. The key thing is to choose the right level of automation for your company. We can offer you individually tailored consulting to this end coupled with our flexible and modular automation solutions. Our scales that can be directly integrated into the sorting process are a case in point. Fully integrated into the sorter, they weigh and measure the volume of every individual item and then forward comprehensive data for further processing.
5. Gentle product handling and smart ejection
Crumpled parcels? Damaged goods? Complaints are a common problem with parcel deliveries. Gentle product handling is clearly crucial to avoiding these. Our Push-Tray technology and the recently launched Split-Tray-Sorter both gently and carefully process parcels whatever their shape, size or weight. When it comes to sort destinations, BÖWE SYSTEC systems offer a variety of different chutes so that items in a range of different sizes can be diverted out of the flow rapidly and reliably.
6. Automated returns handling
The dress is too small or the shoes are not blue enough. When items are sent back because, for example, they don’t fit or just aren’t right, such returns also need to be handled reliably. Our solution for this: automation – right from the receipt of goods onwards. Intuitive BÖWE Sort software can not only set up sorting runs in no time at all and monitor all process and production systems across multiple sites but can also automate and reliably process returns.
You can rely on us
In a constantly shifting market environment what you really need are solutions and a partner who you can rely on. Our systems will run reliably shift after shift but should something get stuck somewhere then they are designed so that you yourself can rectify the problem. As a back-up, our local service experts are on hand 24/7. BÖWE SYSTEC solutions automate the entire parcel sorting process chain from goods inward through sorting to goods outward. No matter what challenge you are confronted with, we will optimize your processes from the first step to the last with our cleverly thought out systems and smart software solutions. Everything from a single source. Get in touch!