Applying automation in warehouses: Benefits and applications
In the landscape of the modern supply chain, innovation is key to staying competitive and efficient. One such innovation that has been making waves is the concept of a "digital twin." This approach has transformed how businesses manage their supply chains by providing a virtual replica of their physical operations. In this article, we will explore what a digital twin is, the benefits it offers within the supply chain, examine a real-life case study with the company oo, and delve into the profound impact of real-data on organisations.
Digital twin in supply chain: What is it?
A digital twin in the context of supply chain management is a virtual representation of a physical supply chain, including its products, processes, and assets. It employs a combination of technologies such as the Internet of Things (IoT), sensors, data analytics, and artificial intelligence to create a real-time mirror image of the physical world. This digital replica allows businesses to monitor, analyse, and optimise their supply chain operations with unparalleled precision.
What are digital twin's benefits in the supply chain?
The implementation of digital twins in supply chain management opens up a world of possibilities. Here are some of the key advantages:
Resolving warehouse space challenges: Digital twins enable businesses to visualise and optimise the allocation of space within warehouses. The insights into inventory levels and order patterns, digital twins help businesses reduce overstocking and under stocking, freeing up valuable warehouse space.
Savings costs: Enhanced visibility and predictive analytics offered by digital twins allow for more efficient resource allocation (equipment, manpower, etc), reducing operational costs and improving the bottom line.
Assessing goods’ conditions: With a digital twin, companies can track the location and condition of assets and goods in real time. This is especially valuable for high-value or perishable items.
Real-life example: How Huboo uses data-led robotics and AI technology to optimise their warehouse operations
Huboo, a UK-based e-commerce fulfilment company, serves as an illustrative example of the transformative power of digital twins in supply chain management. By implementing a digital twin system, Huboo gained real-time visibility into its warehouse operations. This allowed them to improve order accuracy, reduce processing times, and enhance overall operational efficiency. The result was not only a significant reduction in costs* but also an improved customer experience (+5 points in customer satisfaction), positioning Huboo as a leader in e-commerce fulfilment.
*Aligning with the optimisation programme, the costs have been reduced by 10% per year.
Paul Dodd, CTO and Co-founder of Huboo said, “During the pandemic, we clearly demonstrated the strength of our full-stack fulfilment solution at a time when the industry was facing severe challenges. Our unique hub model system has certainly made us stand out in our competitive industry. We are now expanding our service offering and continue our software development. Our engagement with Dexory and use of their robotics and AI is helping us optimise our system and deliver a better working environment.”
Impact of real-time data on organisations
The utilisation of real-time data through digital twins has a profound impact on organisations:
Continuous improvement: Real-data insights enable continuous improvement efforts by identifying bottlenecks, inefficiencies, and areas for optimisation within supply chain processes.
Identifying and understanding problems and opportunities: Businesses can pinpoint problems as they arise and seize opportunities proactively, leading to better decision-making and adaptability.
Locating goods: The ability to track goods in real-time facilitates quicker location and retrieval, reducing delays and improving order fulfilment.
Enhanced delivery: Real-data-driven insights allow for better route planning, improving delivery efficiency, and minimising delivery delays.
In the rapidly evolving world of supply chain management, the integration of digital twins represents a significant leap forward. These virtual representations of physical operations empower businesses with unprecedented visibility, efficiency, and decision-making capabilities. Through resolving space issues, optimising warehouse capacity, saving costs efficiently managing the workforce,... Digital twins are transforming supply chains for the better.
As organisations continue to harness the power of real-time data through digital twins, they are not only achieving continuous improvement but also gaining a deeper understanding of their operations. This, in turn, enables them to locate goods more efficiently, enhance delivery services, and navigate the complex landscape of modern supply chains confidently.
Learn more on the benefits of robotics and automation in the supply chain on https://bit.ly/3Q1kPeB