Why should I consider IOT for my warehouse?
As a warehouse manager or a logistics leader, it may be important for you to increase the efficiency of your picking or have total control on your supply chain system. It depends on your goals to make your warehouse more successful, increase revenue or reduce errors.
The trend of using internet-of-things (IoT) smart labels in the warehouse for order picking is increasing and gaining traction in logistics because it gives teams a direct viewpoint on what is happening in each corner of the warehouse. Thanks to the addition of temperature or humidity sensors, you can even monitor how specific goods are stored in different places of the warehouse.
The main point is that the flexibility of smart labels is limitless, therefore with the assistance of SpearIT experts, we can discuss your situation, requirements and options. The implementation of smart labels is tailored to your warehouse, needs and objectives.
What are the pros and cons of ESL smart labels?
The pros and cons will depend on your viewpoint.
In general, the pros (positives) of IoT smart labels are:
- Impact on the productivity of the order picking which allows you to see real-time which articles are picked up, how much time it takes between order instruction and its fulfilment...
- Synchronisation and real-time monitoring of the article stock levels which gives you more control on the logistics and the replenishment processes as you see which products are running low, which you can promote and which you can discount
- Order picking instructions can be added into smart labels like coloured directions where to find the next article in your picking list, colour codes for special articles (e.g. dangerous, fresh food, etc), colours when articles are running low or have to be added in a bundle, etc.
Cons (negatives) of smart labels:
- Overall cost per smart label. Although you can get proper discounts per 100 or 1000 smart labels, the investment for a large warehouse can be significant.
- You would need a solid secure and mainstream ERP system to connect it to the smart labels. If you have an old ERP system that is outdated, old, unsecure or very niche, then connecting it to thousands of smart labels can overload it and create challenges. There are options to reduce this risk by putting updates on a schedule (every 15 min, hourly or daily) but you logically want a known ERP system where security, connectivity and smart labels are foreseen.
How much time do ESL smart labels last and how reliable is ESL??
In most cases standard price tags last about 7-10 years max depending on many factors.
In an ESL-IoT project, we have a standard warranty in the first 2 years of the project deployment, but can include the maintenance of the installation to avoid no price tag defect at all, or a certain number of defects, or agree on a threshold to replace price tags.
How much does ESL-IOT cost?
It will of course depend on the size of the warehouse and how many articles you have before we consider various label sizes or options.
Typically an electronic smart label comes in various sizes between 5 to 10 cm wide, and you get several options between a monochrome E-ink screen to a 4-colour E-ink screen. A 5 cm monochrome price label that you can see in a large warehouse will cost on average 6 EUR per label or 550 EUR per 100 labels.
Apart from the cost of the ESL labels, there are several aspects that influence the total cost calculation: shop audit (free), RFP proposal, ERP connection, set-up and installation costs. After the audit and your known requirements, we make a budgeted proposal with different ESL options that meet your needs.
We will highlight potential gains and gaps in your order picking process and warehouse management.
How fast can ESL-IOT be installed?
The turnaround of a project can be very rapid from a few weeks to several months depending on the progress of the internet-of-things (IoT) project for your warehouse.
The implementation schedule is agreed with you and can be adapted based on your milestones. We are an independent team of IoT experts and will bring in our own network of price tag technicians, electricians, fixture specialists... depending on the project size, complexity, urgency or the geographic location.
The best way is to contact us and we will let you know what your options are. There are no hidden costs or hidden project tasks. We openly share and discuss the IoT implementation and the setup of the connected price tags.
The faster we can get your requirements and put together a proof of concept, the faster we can fit your project in our schedules and put together a solid proposal with accurate budgets and map out the order picking processes.