Using mobile computer stations in warehouses provides efficiency benefits across a range of tasks. When employees can move freely and complete necessary steps as they go, warehouses and distribution centers will experience the following:
Warehouse computer stations can be customized for specific processes, and utilizing them produces a clear ROI. In the following paragraphs, take a closer look at the many benefits of using mobile workstations in warehouses.
Even if a warehouse is organized with high-demand products easily accessible, you’ll lose time if employees have to return to a stationary distribution workstation to print labels every time they pick an item. Whether you use wave, cluster, batch, or any other order picking method, it can be optimized using a mobile workstation. With greater mobility, employees will spend less time walking back and forth through the warehouse and more time fulfilling orders.
Less walking doesn’t just save time on an individual scale—it also means there will be less foot traffic overall in your entire facility, reducing risk. This can help avoid accidental run-ins, slowdowns, and overcrowding, allowing employees to move faster and operate more efficiently.
When an employee has to print a large batch of labels at a workstation and then bring them to the processing area, they’re more likely to mislabel products, containers, and packaging. At a mobile workstation, however, they can print labels as they go, one at a time, which means they’ll be faster and more accurate. From there, items can go directly to the shelf, ready to be sold. With a warehouse mobile workstation, your products will spend less time sitting on the dock before reaching the sales floor.
Since mobile workstations are battery-powered, you don’t have to worry about creating a safety hazard with long power cords. A quality workstation will be equipped will be equipped with battery packs, and some versions have swappable packs for 24/7 operation. Power strips attached to the workstation allow multiple devices to charge and operate simultaneously.
The most significant factor for determining the return on any investment is its effect on productivity. Mobile warehouse computer stations are simple but pack substantial productivity gains.
With a mobile workstation, employees take fewer steps. Not only does this save time, it reduces how much physical labor is needed, thereby creating a better work experience and allowing employees to improve productivity. For example, at Simplehuman®, the MAX Mobile Workstation saved the company 20% in administrative and processing time on outbound items. These results prove mobile workstations boost productivity and improve the bottom line for warehouses and distributions centers.
“Reverse Logistics” describes the process when returns to stock change the flow of product. Warehouse Mobile Workstations help to streamline this process by allowing the employee quick access to the product information, original order, and inventory status, all at the location of the return. Improving this process saves time, and money. When a customer returns one of your products, an employee has to consider the product type and supplier, match the item to the particular customer, take stock of the product’s condition, and then issue an exchange or refund. Even if every step in this process goes right, returns interrupt your distribution pipeline—and those complications can slow your entire operation.
At a mobile workstation, an employee has access to the inventory database and all the information they need about the original order, allowing them to perform all these processes in one location. Depending on the employee’s credentials, they can also process the exchange or refund, and then the system will be updated right away, thereby improving the customer experience and reducing the risk of an inventory error.
Adding mobile workstations to your operation is a simple choice, not only because of the clear benefits, but because they’re easy to implement. A workstation doesn’t require any special installation process or training. Your employees can follow the same processes they’ve always used—just without having to walk back and forth.
ACD Group offers a variety of warehouse mobile computer workstations, so you can choose the one that best suits your needs and environment. The MAX BWS-R US, for example, can last for three shifts in a 24/7 operation using easily swappable batteries. The MAX TK US can be used in freezers and other cold environments at a temperature of up to -18.4°F. You can even customize your workstation with various unique features to match your specific operation.
When you’re ready to add mobile workstations to your organization, contact ACD Group. We’re happy to answer any questions you may have and help you get started on the road to greater warehouse efficiency.