It’s the most wonderful time of the year! As people prepare to celebrate the holiday season, warehouses, distribution centers, and third-party logistics companies are bracing themselves for the uncertainty of seasonal demands.
Often, basic utility carts or even standard consumer shopping carts are used to pick products. However, an order picking cart that is specifically designed for warehouse applications will yield the best results and achieve maximum efficiency and productivity.
Warehouse picking carts help companies increase agility and mobilize order picking processes with a flexible, mobile solution to meet the fluctuating needs for restocking and fulfilling orders in accordance with seasonal demands. With a well-designed picking cart, order pickers will experience improved speed, accuracy, and worker comfort that leads to increased efficiency and reduced costs.
Related Reading: Order Picking: Best Practises
Exceed Expectations This Holiday Season with Engineered-to-Order Warehouse Picking Carts:
1. Increase Picks Per Day to Meet Consumer Demand
In a COVID-19 world, online shopping has increased significantly. Brick-and-mortar retail sales have declined, but eCommerce sales are expected to record year-over-year growth of at least 40% in November and December combined.1 Capacity regulations are expected to drive typically in-person Black Friday shopping experiences online, in addition to Cyber Monday sales the following week.2 Not only will capacity restrictions increase e-Commerce orders, but it will also lower the number of pickers allowed in a warehouse at a time. This will make increasing picks per day with less staff on-site critical.
With online shopping demand at an overwhelming level, logistics warehouses, order fulfillment centers, and distribution centers will be pressed to keep up with a COVID-19 holiday season. Picking carts can be a key contributor to helping warehouses maximize efficiency in the workplace. A key benefit of warehouse picking carts includes reducing employee travel times by enabling pickers to carry more in a single trip, which directly impacts employee productivity and overall pick rates. With a high-density picking cart like SpeedCartt, the storage cells also enable employees to organize picked items by order while they’re traveling throughout the warehouse.
Related Reading: Case Picking: Spotlight On Discrete Order Picking
2. Streamline Picking Processes to Meet Shipping Expectations
Commonly referred to as “The Amazon Effect,” consumers have been primed to expect two-day, or even single-day shipping from the e-commerce giant. To keep up with the competition, companies need to streamline their picking processes to not only match what Amazon can offer its customers but meet higher-volumes of orders due to the holiday season. While pickers can still put picked items on standard basic utility carts or shopping carts, this equipment is not specifically designed for order picking applications. Picking carts that are not purpose-built can also become disorganized and add unnecessary time between picking the order and returning to the packing station.
An engineered-to-order warehouse picking cart like SpeedCartt enables pickers to not only pick multiple orders at the same time for maximum efficiency, but also organize individual orders with its cell-based design. For a more custom-designed solution, a modular system like FlowCell gives warehouses the ability to configure a picking cart based on their specific needs. For example, FlowCell offers some flexibility if the application requires a solution that is more heavy-duty or tailored. FlowCell can have steel pick trays or wire pick trays or it can have cantilever beams for odd-shaped items. This is especially useful in industrial applications or where picked items are more bulky and cumbersome to tote around a warehouse.
Related Reading: Order Fulfillment: Competing With Amazon's One-Day Shipping
3. Increase Order Accuracy to Build Consumer Loyalty
According to Accenture, 47% of consumers stop doing business with a brand after the company disappoints them.3 In the current environment, order accuracy is more difficult to maintain due to the influx of orders that need to be fulfilled, packed, and shipped. Order accuracy, which involves getting the right products to the right person, in the right condition, is critical to customer happiness and building loyalty.
When pickers use off-the-shelf picking carts for fulfilling orders, they don’t have the benefit of picking-specific features such as additional rows, columns, storage cells, and labels. While an alternative option like a utility cart may be cheaper upfront, a purpose-built picking cart can be a more durable option that lasts longer. These features are critical to helping pickers stay organized while they’re running through aisles fulfilling multiple orders at once. Especially with labeling capabilities, pickers can segregate individual orders on a single cart while pulling products. When pickers return to the packing station, they can pull completed orders from their designated spots rather than stop down to re-organize products to prepare them for packaging.
In addition to allowing pickers to organize picked items by order, a high-density picking cart like SpeedCartt enables pickers to hold more product in one trip around the warehouse.
Meet Holiday Demand with Warehouse Picking Carts
At UNEX, our team of space optimization experts have engineered a variety of picking carts that are designed to increase efficiency and throughput in order fulfillment applications. Because of their agility, mobile picking carts allow busy warehouses and fulfillment centers to meet the expectations of the holiday season by moving a variety of items throughout their operations with speed and accuracy.
Looking to increase productivity and accuracy in your fulfillment center? Connect with a space optimization specialist to learn more about our warehouse picking cart solutions, or to request a quote.