Consumer Behavior Driving Transformation in Warehouses

A summary of the Forbes article, “What’s Driving The Need For Robots In The Warehouse?”

What’s driving the need for transformation of the once-humble warehouse? In this article on, Jim Lawton, Vice President and General Manager, Zebra Robotics and Automation, makes the case that, in large part, consumer behavior is a driving force behind the call for better productivity, efficiency and throughout.

The pandemic pushed more and more shoppers online – 20% growth in 2020 over 2019 and 50% growth in 2021 over 2019. And it is not going to slow down – e-commerce sales are expected to top $1 trillion in 2022. As more of us shop online for everything from clothes and electronics to groceries, we’re moving the warehouse into a more critical role in the customer relationship. Our expectations for the right product, at the right price, delivered overnight and in some cases, same day are putting pressure on warehouse operations and distribution centers to make wholesale changes to the way they run.

The transformation includes more automation, especially autonomous mobile robots (AMRs) which can reduce the inefficiency caused by the need for associates to race up and down miles of aisles, improve accuracy and accelerate the time from order to pick to ship.

Posts highlights

  • How consumer expectations are driving the need for warehouse transformation
  • What warehouse operators should look for in identifying where AMRs and automation can deliver value
  • Three things warehouse teams need to know before they deploy an automation solution
  • How consumers’ on-line buying habits are influencing the future of work in the warehouse

“I believe this type of innovation (software-driven collaborative robots) can be the catalyst for a new category of labor in the warehouse – one that taps the creativity, problem-solving and decision-making skills inherent in people.”

Jim Lawton, Vice President and General Manager, Zebra Robotics and Automation

Read the full article on Forbes here.

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