Numerous demand factors affected a broad range of businesses during the current coronavirus pandemic. Unexpected peaks in demand, significant reductions in demand, and reduction in supply bottlenecks, are just a few examples. It quickly became clear that companies that were using smart warehousing prior to the outbreak had a clear advantage over those that weren't.
So, what is smart warehousing? Smart warehousing is an application area from the “Logistics 4.0” complex. It is essentially a warehouse environment where instead of common operations being performed only by humans, they are completed via machines and computers in a totally data-driven way using IoT-based technologies.
Like other forms of business automation, warehouse automation improves productivity and saves costs. According to forecasts by Tractica, logistics and warehousing robot shipments worldwide will grow from 194,000 units to 938,000 units from 2018 to 2022 as many companies rush to adopt robotic systems.
In both the retail industry and manufacturing industry, digitization through the Internet allows for numerous new opportunities. Paths for new, more efficient, and partly autonomous business models and production chains are being paved thanks to the Internet of Things, whereby numerous 'things' - objects as well as humans - can be connected to streamline and optimize existing warehouse processes to make them 'smarter'. In order to master the increasing demands on efficient intralogistics, companies are increasingly relying on the digital networking of the entire supply chain. In the smart warehouses, intelligent IT systems take control of the entire process flow in each step. Below are three IoT-based technologies in smart warehousing today.