Warehousing operations are crucial in any supply chain, as they decouple demand and supply in time, space, and quantity. Automation has gradually changed the type and nature of operations. The first fully automated warehouse system, a so-called AS/R system, was introduced in the 1960s by Demag. Since then, warehouses have changed substantially. New storage and handling technologies and advanced IT systems have been introduced. The advent of the internet with e-commerce operations had a major impact on these developments. E-commerce operations can be characterized by large numbers of stored products, mostly small orders and large variations in the order volumes. This also has led to new robotic systems with high storage and flexible throughput capacity. Simultaneously, many activities in the warehouses are still manual. Securing a safe, ergonomic, and sustainable work environment is an important challenge. This chapter reviews the new developments in warehouse operations and the challenges they bring and suggests skills needed by managers to cope with these challenges.
|Title of host publication||Global Logistics and Supply Chain Strategies for the 2020s|
|Editors||Rico Merkert, Kai Hoberg|
|Place of Publication||Berlin|
|Publication status||Published - 2022|