Labour Modelling - Online selection of Office products

Hadrian Logistics Solutions was approached by a large supplier of Office products in 2013. They had four warehouses across the country picking orders for their on line business. It was very difficult to determine what labour was required at each site as the companies order system allowed customers to place orders for same day delivery up to midday each day. Warehouse managers always wanted to be able to fill orders and understandably erred on the side of caution when it came to manning each shift. The consequence of this however was that more often than not, they had too many people.

Hadrian Logistics Solutions worked the customer to review over a years order data for each site and was able to model what the likely order quantity was going to be for each day of the year and for each section of the warehouse. When this was combined with analysis of the processes used to receive and despatch product, along with the time required to do so, it was possible to model the labour required in each section of each warehouse for varying order volumes.

Feedback from this customer 12 months later suggests that to date, the model continues to forecast the labour required at each site to within +/- 1.5% and the savings have been significant.

Paper Pick versus Voice Pick?

A large Australian based Food and Beverage manufacturer was operating SAP in their warehouses with order pickers using paper pick lists to direct them to the different products and locations. This customer needed help to quantify the impact that handling these lists was having on the pick process as well guidance re what benefits might be gained by introducing ‘Voice Pick’ technology.

Hadrian Logistics Solutions conducted a series of time studies across five sites and was able to confirm that order pickers were spending 14% of their time handling/referring to these lists during the order as well as travelling to/from the office to collect their next assignment (something which would have also been made redundant were Voice Pick to be installed.).

Our customer was able to use this potential saving to help develop the case for investing in Voice Pick technology. Hadrian Logistics Solutions assisted in documenting he return on investment as well as presenting the findings to the National Supply Chain leadership group.

Recent feedback from this customer confirmed that the productivity benefits modelled by Hadrian Logistics Solutions were accurate almost to within the case.

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Labour Modelling – Grocery Warehouse New Zealand

One of Hadrian Logistics Solutions existing customers, a large grocery wholesaler in New Zealand was expanding their operation and building a new warehouse. From experience, they had estimates for the labour that would be required to run different facets of the operation for varying volumes; however, they wanted to back up these estimates with a quantified assessment.Hadrian Logistics Solutions was engaged, and built a model that forecast the labour required for:

  • Truck unloading;
  • Product put aways;
  • Full and split case selection by different pick section, and
  • Truck loading.

Hadrian Logistics Solutions worked with the team to confirm the processes that would be used for each task, as well as maps of the planned facility to determine travel distances. Allowances were included for traffic delay as well as for personnel and fatigue requirements. Using standard time data, each task was modelled for average and peak operating volumes to show the labour required by each section of the warehouse and for the whole site.

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Operational Analysis of Equipment Needs

Hadrian Logistics Solutions was contacted by an existing client in 2012 with an interesting problem. At one of their larger sites, loaded and empty pantechnicon containers were moved around the yard with on average 170 moves per 24 hours. The yard was managed by the contractor and the contractor believed that they needed more than the two prime movers to do the work. Our customer needed an impartial assessment before they made a potentially costly investment in more equipment.

Hadrian Logistics Solutions spent two weeks at the site and used a mixture of time data taken from direct observations as well as historical data to confirm the number of moves by type that typically occurred during each hour of the day. This allowed Hadrian Logistics Solutions to model the moves per hour for varying operating volumes and in turn the equipment required. It was revealed that whilst the volume of work exceeded the capacity of the existing equipment for the ambient side of the site, it also confirmed that the prime mover on the Temperature Controlled side of the operation has spare capacity to help out during these peak periods. The Contractor improved the communication between the operators of the prime movers and our customer avoided a significant financial outlay.