Sainsbury's Ups DC Efficiency With VoiceMan MOVER

U.K. retailer Sainsbury’s has added the VoiceMan MOVER Warehouse Operations application to its initial implementation of the VoiceMan middleware picking solution from VoiteQ, incorporating Vocollect Voice technology. The success of the voice-picking application installed at three Sainsbury distribution centers in 2008 has led to the grocer’s further use of the vendor's VoiceMan solutions.

The implementation of middleware enabled the additional functionality to be integrated into current business processes with little or no business impact, including zero downtime for Sainsbury’s deliveries from the warehouse.

“With the use of the middleware solution, VoiteQ have implemented their VoiceMan solution into Sainsbury’s DCs with minimal disruption to our day-to-day business,” noted Colin Smith, logistics systems manager at London-based Sainsbury’s. “A large part of the success of the implementation was down to the capabilities and flexibility of VoiteQ. They have exceeded our expectations.”

Following the success of the original voice-picking project, Sainsbury’s decided to employ VoiteQ’s real-time radio frequency (RF) solutions to make other operational improvements. The new solution uses the existing RF network within the warehouse to interface with truck-mounted terminals running VoiteQ’s VoiceMan MOVER Warehouse Operations application. VoiceMan MOVER permits forklift truck operators to carry out putaway, replenishment, pallet moves and stock counts in real time, interacting with picking to provide timely replenishments, thereby ensuring high availability on a batch-based legacy WMS. All of this was achieved with no major modifications to the existing system. VoiceMan MOVER now manages stock movement tasks at a number of Sainsbury’s DCs.

“The DCs using VoiceMan MOVER continue to be impressed with how easy, reliable and intuitive the system is for the warehouse colleagues’ providing optimal use of reach trucks to warehouse locations,” added Smith.

“We have provided Sainsbury’s with innovative solutions which directly support their ability to provide exceptional service to its customers, whilst also achieving the planned return on investment with the added benefit of the RF equipment utilized being future solutions proof,” noted David Stanhope, CEO of Blackpool, Lancashire-based VoiteQ.

Employing 148,000 associates, J Sainsbury plc consists of Sainsbury's Supermarkets, Sainsbury's Local, Bells Stores, Jacksons Stores and JB Beaumont, Sainsbury’s Online, and Sainsbury's Bank.

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