The Internet of Things (IoT) has already made our homes ‘smart’, allowing us to control heating, lighting and security systems remotely but now it’s also set to revolutionise the warehouse and logistics industry as it continues to connect smart devices with back-office software.
What is the Internet of Things (IoT)?
Simply put, it is a network of devices with sensors that are able to communicate and exchange data with each other and be controlled remotely using the internet. So, all those things that make our home ‘smart’ such as lighting, heating and even everyday appliances, are part of the IoT. Smart watches are also part of the IoT.
According to Statista the global IoT market is set to be worth more than 1.7 trillion dollars by 2019, making it one of the fastest growing sectors.
So, how can it help the warehouse and logistics sector to work more efficiently, and more importantly what will be the benefits?
How to make your warehouse smart
As the cost of technology has fallen over recent years and access to the internet is more widely available, so the tools needed to create a smart warehouse have also become more accessible.
Adding your warehouse to the IoT can have real benefits, allowing businesses to more easily predict problems or shortfalls in the supply chain as well as being able to predict how weather forecasts may affect shipping and delivery times. For those businesses who warehouse stock that requires full traceability of, for example, serial or batch numbers, IoT will become invaluable.
Radio-frequency identification tags (RFID) and sensors attached to shelving and bins allow management to have real-time up to the minute information on inventory. This is crucial if you are going to be able to compete successfully in the internet retail arena as your stock and lead times need to be accurate to keep customers satisfied.
But, of course, before you can apply this kind of technology, your stock and bin locations need to be sensibly organised using a logical shelving or racking system. If you’re looking for industrial shelving Ireland based company https://www.rackzone.ie/shelving/industrial-residential-shelving can help.
Supplying your staff with wearable technology allows them to be wherever they need to in the warehouse instead of needing to be at their desk in the office to access information.