Retail Store Replenishment

The DC needed to supply stores with general merchandise and health/beauty aids at piece-pick quantities. The solution features a process improvement that uses totes for retail store replenishment. The totes contain merchandise by aisle and shelf location for optimized re-stocking at their retail stores, increasing efficiency and saving labour costs.

The Challenges

To optimize labour productivity at the stores, the inventory needed to be delivered aisle-ready (in totes with merchandise grouped specifically by store aisle and shelf). The retailer also needed to realize gains at the DC in space utilization, order accuracy, and system productivity to justify their investment.

Our Solution

The solution begins at receiving. Merchandise is brought into the facility on pallets and placed on conveyor to queue it for decanting. Each decanting station has a touch screen display with a user interface for Dematic software. The user interface indicates how many cases workers need to remove from pallets and place into the inventory totes (put-to-tote).

Empty pallets are placed on a return conveyor. Inventory totes are conveyed through a scanner to a narrow belt sorter, which feeds the totes into the Multishuttle staging buffer.

The Multishuttle is an automatic storage and retrieval system with 100,000 discrete storage positions.

Next, order processing requests from the retailer ERP business system are sent to the Warehouse Management System (WMS). The WMS allocates the inventory to orders and determines outbound shipping requirements. The Dematic Warehouse Execution Software (WES) plans the store tote contents by aisle, optimizes operational processes, and directs the Multishuttle to the inventory totes needed for order fulfilment.

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