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Warehouse Robots Disinfect Faster

Warehouse Robots Disinfect Faster

Warehouse Robots can Disinfect large spaces and warehouse faster and more effectively than humans.

With every droplet that we can’t see, touch, or feel dispersed into the air, the threat of spreading Covid-19 persists. It’s become increasingly critical to keep these heavy droplets from lingering — especially on surfaces, which are welcoming and generous hosts.  Thankfully, our chemical cleaning products are effective, but using them to disinfect larger settings can be expensive, dangerous, and time-consuming. Across the globe there are thousands of warehouses, grocery stores, schools, and other spaces where cleaning workers are at risk.

Succesful warehouse and supply chain management leader leverage technology to gain efficiency and increase profits.  Using warehouse robots can help relieve the burden of labor management and increase safety.

With that in mind, a team from MIT’s Computer Science and Artificial Intelligence Laboratory (CSAIL), in collaboration with Ava Robotics and the Greater Boston Food Bank (GBFB), designed a new robotic system that powerfully disinfects surfaces and neutralizes aerosolized forms of the coronavirus.  The approach uses a custom UV-C light fixture designed at CSAIL that is integrated with Ava Robotics’ mobile robot base. The results were encouraging enough that researchers say that the approach could be useful for autonomous UV disinfection in other environments, such as factories, restaurants, and supermarkets.  UV-C light has proven to be effective at killing viruses and bacteria on surfaces and aerosols, but it’s unsafe for humans to be exposed.

“MIT has been a great partner, and when they came to us, the team was eager to start the integration, which took just four weeks to get up and running,” says Ava Robotics CEO Youssef Saleh. “The opportunity for robots to solve workplace challenges is bigger than ever, and collaborating with MIT to make an impact at the food bank has been a great experience.”
Pierson and Romanishin worked alongside Hunter Hansen (software capabilities), Bryan Teague of MIT Lincoln Laboratory (who assisted with the UV-C lamp assembly), Igor Gilitschenski and Xiao Li (assisting with future autonomy research), MIT professors Daniela Rus and Saman Amarasinghe, and Ava leads Marcio Macedo and Youssef Saleh. This project was supported in part by Ava Robotics, who provided their platform and team support.

Alpine Supply Chain Solutions Optimizes Distribution for Mark Andy

Alpine Supply Chain Solutions Optimizes Distribution for Mark Andy

Performs Storage Type Analysis and Facility Design to right-size facility then a Network
Analysis, 3PL Selection, and onboard to support next-day delivery

Alpine Supply Chain Solutions, a leading boutique supply chain consulting firm, today announced the successful completion of a multi-faceted distribution optimization project for Mark Andy, a global manufacturer of printing presses. Alpine provided consulting services to improve space utilization, productivity and replenishment cycle times at Mark Andy’s primary distribution center in Des Plaines, IL, and conducted a network analysis to determine the best location for third party logistics (3PL) facilities to facilitate next day shipping for customers.

Mark Andy was outgrowing its 80,000-square foot distribution center and needed to determine if 40,000 or 80,000 additional square feet was needed. Alpine conducted a Storage Type Analysis, Facility Design, and Slotting project to create the right-sized product homes and place the right products into the best locations, maximizing space usage and improving productivity.

Stuart Gallup

“Alpine has a well-rounded team that understands all aspects of supply chain operations as well as current
industry standards,” said Stuart Gallup, Vice President-Commercial Market for Mark Andy Print Products. “They were able to rapidly respond to changing information in a very dynamic environment and provided the best solution at a given cost which increased our ROI.” 

 

 

In addition to the warehouse optimization project, Mark Andy also recognized the need for new locations across the US to facilitate next-day delivery. Alpine conducted a Network Analysis to understand where Mark Andy customers were located and to determine the ideal number of facilities and inventory levels required to provide their network with a 98% next day service window. Alpine then conducted an in-depth RFP process and helped Mark Andy select and onboard five new 3PL locations in five months.

About Mark Andy
Mark Andy is a pioneer of the graphic arts and printing industry. As the world’s leading manufacturer of
narrow- and mid-web printing and finishing equipment, we supply leading global brands, including Mark Andy and Presstek printing presses, Rotoflex finishing solutions, as well as a complete line of Mark Andy Print Products consumables and pressroom supplies. All products are backed by the largest customer support team in
the industry, minimizing downtime and helping our customers be profitable, efficient and at the forefront of innovation. For more information, visit Mark Andy.

About Alpine Supply Chain Solutions
Alpine Supply Chain Solutions, based in Chicago, IL is a supply chain consulting company driven to ensure their clients get the most value from their investments. Their approach to every project starts with the data and ends with a cost justifiable solution. With deep roots in industrial engineering, Alpine’s approach is unique.

WERC: Spreading Safety- Engaging Warehouse Employees & Leaders

WERC: Spreading Safety- Engaging Warehouse Employees & Leaders

Alpine Supply Chain’s Michael Wohlwend and Brenda Stoltz moderated a webinar about spreading safety and enagaging warehouse employees and leaders with WERC, the Warehousing Education & Research Council. The full webinar is below along with the transcript PDF.

Alpine Supply Chain Solutions has collaborated with industry partners, researched the impacts, and documented best practices, so that you don’t have to. If you’re overwhelmed by the amount of information available on how to keep your warehouse team safe in the midst of COVID-19, general COVID-19 readiness, and HR solutions, feel free to contact Alpine directly using the form to right.

Transcript_WERC_Spreading Safety through engaged employees 3.31.20_Alpine-Supply-Chain-Solutions

 

About WERC:

WERC is the only professional organization focused on logistics management and its role in the supply chain. Through membership in WERC, seasoned practitioners and those new to the industry master best practices and establish valuable professional relationships. Since being founded in 1977, WERC has maintained a strategic vision to continuously offer resources that help distribution practitioners and suppliers stay on top in our dynamic, variable field. These include national, regional, local and online educational events; performance metrics for benchmarking; practical research; expert insights; and multiple opportunities for peer-to-peer knowledge exchange.

 

About Michael Wohlwend:

Managing Principal, Michael Wohlwend spent six years with SAP running the Mid-West Services business, where he was the executive sponsor on 3 SAP EWM installs. Michael also spent seven years with Manhattan Associates where he was involved in over 30+ installs. In addition, his responsibilities included RFID in a BOX. Prior to that as a member of consulting and software firms, he provided supply chain solutions for more than 30 top companies including Technicolor, Warner Brothers/Elektra/Atlantic, Sargento Foods, Johnsonville, IKON Office Solutions, Depuy, Schwarz Pharma, Long’s Drugs, Ross Stores, QVC, eLuxury, Alliance Beverage and Churchill Distributors.

In his 25 years of experience in the supply chain industry, Wohlwend has authored numerous articles for trade publications and has presented more than 70 seminars and speeches at key industry events. These events include National Conference of Operations & Fulfillment (NCOF), Warehouse Education Research Council (WERC), Council of Logistics Management (CLM), ScanTech, Distribution Computer Expo and ID Expo. He has been a board member of WERC since 2008 and Past President in 2014.

About Brenda Stoltz:

Brenda is a Human Resources Leader and an experienced Operations Manager instilled with the practical knowledge of strategic leadership and management.  She holds a strong sense of business objectives and strives to develop a positive culture that promotes constructive growth. As a dynamic leader with robust interpersonal skills, she holds experience in leading highly proficient teams comprising of HR Specialists, HR Business Partners, and operations managers.

Brenda aims to develop a healthy workspace environment that nurtures new talent and helps operational partners meet their goals. Ensuring high-end compliance and execution of work responsibilities, she excels in the areas of staffing, employee relations, performance management, payroll/compliance, and development, organizational restructuring, workforce planning, and change management.

Brenda’s greatest source of inspiration comes from witnessing the growth and development of team members & operations partners. She admires working with others and helping them identify, analyze, and solve complex business issues through strategic leadership and teamwork. Besides this, she is an outdoor enthusiast who loves spending time in the company of her husband and two wonderful toddler boys.

Catch Michael Wohlwend’s Take on the Importance of Warehouse Management in Supply Chain Dive

Catch Michael Wohlwend’s Take on the Importance of Warehouse Management in Supply Chain Dive

Alpine’s Michael Wohlwend was quoted in Supply Chain Dive, “The Changing Face of Warehouse Change Management,” sharing insights on training and retaining good warehouse employees and to creating a favorable work environment. New technologies can completely alter a worker’s daily job, requiring operations executives to take a strategic approach to managing labor through the change.
 
“When Amazon opened a Chicago facility with $15 hourly pay, 80 of the 220 workers at a 3PL in Chicago called in sick,” Michael Wohlwend, managing principal at Alpine Supply Chain Solutions, told Supply Chain Dive. “Pay is important, but it’s only part of workers’ calculus. Many eventually returned to the more favorable working conditions at the 3PL,” he said.
 
Read the full article here.

About Michael Wohlwend:

Managing Principal, Michael Wohlwend spent six years with SAP running the Mid-West Services business, where he was the executive sponsor on 3 SAP EWM installs. Michael also spent seven years with Manhattan Associates where he was involved in over 30+ installs. In addition, his responsibilities included RFID in a BOX. Prior to that as a member of consulting and software firms, he provided supply chain solutions for more than 30 top companies including Technicolor, Warner Brothers/Elektra/Atlantic, Sargento Foods, Johnsonville, IKON Office Solutions, Depuy, Schwarz Pharma, Long’s Drugs, Ross Stores, QVC, eLuxury, Alliance Beverage and Churchill Distributors.

In his 25 years of experience in the supply chain industry, Wohlwend has authored numerous articles for trade publications and has presented more than 70 seminars and speeches at key industry events. These events include National Conference of Operations & Fulfillment (NCOF), Warehouse Education Research Council (WERC), Council of Logistics Management (CLM), ScanTech, Distribution Computer Expo and ID Expo. He has been a board member of WERC since 2008 and Past President in 2014.

Alpine is now Goods to Person Technology Certified

Alpine is now Goods to Person Technology Certified

Alpine Supply Chain has recently been certified by three different Goods-to-Person Technology Providers: @Opex “Perfect Pick,” @GreyOrange “Ranger” and @Slate River Systems Integrators “RAFT” solutions. Goods-to-Person technology has gotten quite a bit of buzz lately, and rightfully so. With the rise of e-commerce, the volume and mix of orders increases pressure to store, pick and deliver goods in a faster and more efficient manner.

If you are challenged with what items to designate and at what velocity, Alpine can identify the items that will work best in different Goods-to-Person Technology options, and will develop an estimate for assessing the potential ROI for the investment.

How it works:

“The goods-to-person concept is simple: incoming goods are removed from pallets, either manually or automatically. The cartons and/or pieces are then placed into totes (smaller goods) or into trays (larger goods), and stored in high-density automated storage and retrieval systems (ASRS), carousels or robotic systems. As orders are required to be fulfilled SKUs are automatically retrieved from storage and brought to the picker, either at a pick station where the operator picks into an order container or to an ergonomic palletizing station where items are placed on a pallet. Since the picker does not have to walk, the focus at the pick stations and pack stations is on ergonomics and high productivity.” – Material, Handling, & Logistics

Warehouse E-Commerce Capabilities

Warehouse E-Commerce Capabilities

Adding ecommerce capabilities to a traditional retailer’s warehouse – If your warehouse is designed for Put-to-Store, Flow through, or Batch Pick & Sort by Store strategies, new capabilities to fulfill online orders include picking eaches, processing orders with very few lines, parcel shipping, and managing tight cutoff times.

In Your Warehouse:

Consider new options to leverage your facility, like put walls, unit sorters, or separate ecommerce waves. Conduct a storage-type analysis to identify the ideal size and quantity of pick locations and evaluate distribution networks to increase next-day service and store pick up.
If you need help, give us a call at Alpine Supply Chain Solutions!

Greg is a seasoned Supply Chain Technology and Operations Professional focused on driving revenue through value engineering (ROI Analysis), and business development. He has spent his entire career as an innovative leader in Supply Chain Sales, Consulting and Implementation and now joins us at Alpine. Greg possesses over 30 years of progressive hands-on experience with a broad range of mission-critical supply chain technologies including on-premise, cloud-based, and SaaS solutions. He has deep domain expertise across a variety of solutions sets including supply chain execution, supply chain planning, labor management solutions, and supply chain advanced analytics. Greg has extensive experience evaluating, selling and implementing advanced technologies related to big data, predictive analytics, and artificial intelligence. Greg is considered an expert in roles related to “C – Level” strategic sales, business growth and expansion, value engineering and business case development. He has leadership experience in Pre-Sales Consulting, Account Executive mentoring, product strategy, training/mentoring and management consulting. Greg spent the first 10 years of his Supply Chain career at Fleming Foods, a $40B Grocery Wholesaler, and he was responsible for rolling out WMS and Labor solutions to over 30 Distribution Centers within the Fleming network. Greg then transitioned to Dallas Systems/EXE Technologies where, for almost 10 years, he served in various Supply Chain leadership roles. Prior to joining Alpine, Greg spent 15 years at Manhattan Associates, the leading global provider of Supply Chain Software and Services. While at Manhattan, Greg had a proven track record of providing clear, timely and focused solutions to a variety of Fortune 500 Companies in all key vertical markets.