Retraining Workers for Automated Warehouses

training warehouse operators for automation

People hate change. Once that is firmly understood, warehouse managers can actually accomplish something.

No matter how much warehouse staff complain about the current system, the only thing worse is giving them a new one.

As much as picking staff hate inefficient order fulfillment operations, what they really hate is the disruption of learning a new system. Truth to tell, a lot of new systems are disruptive and not in a good way.

They don’t integrate with your software, they don’t work with your hardware, they mean taking the warehouse apart and putting it back together – these are hard changes, and they disrupt more than your warehouse staff, they can kick a hole in your KPI while you get everyone up to speed.

Soft Change vs Hard Change

Soft change management is an approach of gradual changes that result in a smoother transition.

Hard change management is making the plans for the infrastructure and procedures that a new picking process will need to be a success.

One will not work without the other.

Pick-to-light is a change for the better. Pick-to-light is simple; it’s light directed to signal pickers which items to take or put away. It can be completely paperless, and Voodoo Robotics Pick-to-Light can integrate quickly and seamlessly with existing operations.

While the hard change decisions might have already been made, it’s the soft change and the input of warehouse staff that are going to make or break the change.

So start with a starter kit. Ten pick lights are enough to start the changeover, and integrating with the current WMS software – or even Google Sheets.

What can ten devices do? Try these ideas:

  • Pick-to-Light Cart

    Stick them on carts. Whether picking or put-away, messages get sent to the picker or stocker on location, bin number, and other information that makes both operations easy.

    • Aisle two
    • West shelf
    • Section 4
    • Level two
    • Bin 17B
    • Pick 24 of SKU1234
  • Directional Pick Light

    Stick one on the handle of a pallet jack and select a picker, then tell the picker which pallet to take to what bay for loading.

  • Hot Zone

    Create a hot zone for the most frequently ordered items with a PTL device for each one. This will save time in picking and in restock.

  • Forklifts

    Forklift and crane operators take instructions directly on what loads to life and where to set them down.

Schedule a demo to see how we can help you reduce mispicks.

Implementing Warehouse Automation

Just ten pick lights are enough to make a change, and it’s not going to disrupt an operation with rewiring and the associated expense of hiring electricians. Plain over-the-counter AAA batteries can be found at every convenience store, or you can recharge for an even lower environmental footprint.

If a change makes things easier down the road is not the issue. It’s what the change means in terms of stress and disruption that causes the resistance.

Working with Voodoo Robotics gives the smaller operation the flexibility it needs without the disruption of other solutions. Call today for a consultation and find out how Pick-to-Light from Voodoo Robotics makes for a good change.

Get Started

Let’s have a conversation so we can better understand your needs.  Schedule a demo or contact us and we can help ease the transition!

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