GreyOrange APAC CEO, Nalin Advani, spoke at LogiSYM 2017 in Singapore on the deployment of robotics technology for Supply Chain Automation. LogiSYM is the region’s premier Supply Chain Symposium and Summit, which focuses on bridging concepts, practice and technology in supply chain management.
Raymon Krishnan, President – The Logistics & Supply Chain Management Society, commented, “LogiSYM is a unique platform where we bring speakers and delegates together to discuss the latest trends and strategies that impact industry. We are pleased to include in this year’s agenda the newest technologies for supply chain, including robotics and artificial intelligence. GreyOrange is an exciting company making inroads into supply chain automation and we are delighted to have them join us.”
At the conference, Nalin highlighted the increasing complexities in today’s supply chain – which accounts for 10-15 percent of national GDP for many economies – due to the explosive growth in recent years in ecommerce, omnichannel fulfilment, express delivery options, manpower issues and SKU proliferation, among others. The double-digit annual growth rate for ecommerce is expected to continue beyond 2020.
Nalin said, “To cope with increasing complexities and demands, supply chain automation has evolved rapidly in recent years. Warehouses have moved from rigid automation to intelligent automation to achieve scalability and flexibility.”
By 2018, 45 percent of the 200 leading global ecommerce and omnichannel commerce companies will deploy robotics systems in their order fulfillment warehouse and delivery operations, according to an IDC report, IDC FutureScape: Worldwide Robotics 2017 Predictions. Robots can help reduce costs and improve the effectiveness of order fulfillment warehousing operations. The next-generation of ecommerce operating models that is accelerating in some segments of the industry are driven by business model changes, ecosystems and supply networks redesign, new business metrics, usage of dark stores for automated ecommerce fulfillment and click-and-collect, and an emphasis on delivery speed and “Uberization” of last-mile delivery.
At the conference, Nalin explained how the GreyOrange Butler, a goods-to-person robotics system, handles automated inventory storage (putaway) and picking. The Butler software adapts in real-time to changing inventory profiles and order fulfillment patterns, resulting in high productivity and accuracy, and is capable of delivering a far higher throughput. Butler robotics systems are being used in Asia; Japan, Hongkong and India, South America and Europe.
The conclusion included examples of useful robots that work in collaboration with people, the importance of Artificial Intelligence in robotics technology, and the role the Connected Supply Chain will bring to Industry 4.0. The logistics industry is undergoing a massive and exciting technological transformation and the race to modernise has never been faster.