Viastore Systems, an intralogistics and automated material handling system provider, is helping customers apply automation solutions to challenges they typically solve with pure labor.
At the ProMat trade show in Chicago this week, the company discussed its work with Americold, a third-party logistics service company (3PL) that provides temperature-controlled warehousing for food and beverage industry clients.
By enhancing the automated storage and retrieval systems (AS/RS) in a warehouse facility in Indianapolis, the company was able to boost its case and pallet picking rates, said John Clark, marketing and new business development manager for viastore.
The key to making this improvement was a combination of software and mechanical changes that helped Americold handle and separate double-stacked pallets, allowing warehouse workers to deliver decoupled half-pallet picks directly to the shipping floor.
While many small warehouses and 3PLs may have solved such challenges in the past by simply adding more workers, automation solutions are increasingly popular as U.S. distribution centers wrestle with business trends such as rising real estate prices and higher labor costs, Clark said.