Human Factors Affecting Your Largest Operating Expenditure

1695 WordsSep 17, 20157 Pages
Introduction Manual order picking is still the most common way to fulfill orders from customers. This process of order picking is highly labor-intensive, repetitive and time consuming, resulting in one of the largest organizational expenses in a warehouse environment. Traditionally, order picking systems have been designed to limit travel time, search time, and pick time. The theory is that by reducing travel, search, and pick time, the process should become more productive, limiting costs, reducing errors, and being user friendly. So why design a system that is dependent on your largest operating expenditure without taking into account various human factors which can lead to lower productivity, increased errors, system constraints,…show more content…
We installed new racking which enabled us to store our inventory higher than before, allowing us to increase our product offerings. We changed our aisle configuration to decrease travel time. We implemented a new system to locate our product which reduced search time. We configured our layout of products so that the best sellers are on the floor which lowers our pick times. We even implemented a new hand-held scanner technology to reduce our pick errors. With our new order picking system we were trying to increase production. During our planning of the system, we never took into account how the human factor would affect our productivity. We designed it to maximize our efficiency, increase pick rates, lower pick errors and be user friendly. We did not take into account how our employee’s learning curve, acceptance, and engagement would affect the system. We realized that the system was still manual and that human error would be a factor, but we did not fully consider the human factor in designing the system. Question Should human factors, which are traditionally overlooked, be more highly considered when designing an order picking system to optimize productivity and reduce inefficiencies in a warehouse setting? This question was reached with the help of the following PICOC: Population Employees that pick orders Intervention Impact of human factors on order picking
Open Document