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Mail rotating sorter for ordering arriving mail in a straight line.
Mail rotating sorter for ordering arriving mail in a straight line.

Logistics automation is the application of computer software or automated machinery to improve the efficiency of logistics operations. Typically this refers to operations within a warehouse or distribution center, with broader tasks undertaken by supply chain engineering systems and enterprise resource planning systems.

Logistics automation systems can powerfully complement the facilities provided by these higher level computer systems. The focus on an individual node within a wider logistics network allows systems to be highly tailored to the requirements of that node.

Components

Factory automation with KUKA industrial robots for palletizing food products like bread and toast at a bakery in Germany
Factory automation with KUKA industrial robots for palletizing food products like bread and toast at a bakery in Germany
Mail sorting line: mail is identified through bar-code scanning and automatically sorted by destination.
Mail sorting line: mail is identified through bar-code scanning and automatically sorted by destination.
Automatic wrapping machine for unit loads
Automatic wrapping machine for unit loads
Automatic box labeling machine
Automatic box labeling machine
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Logistics automation systems comprise a variety of hardware and software components:

Benefits of logistics automation

A typical warehouse or distribution center will receive stock of a variety of products from suppliers and store these until the receipt of orders from customers, whether individual buyers (e.g. mail order), retail branches (e.g. chain stores), or other companies (e.g. wholesalers). A logistics automation system may provide the following:

A complete warehouse automation system can drastically reduce the workforce required to run a facility, with human input required only for a few tasks, such as picking units of product from a bulk packed case. Even here, assistance can be provided with equipment such as pick-to-light units. Smaller systems may only be required to handle part of the process. Examples include automated storage and retrieval systems, which simply use cranes to store and retrieve identified cases or pallets, typically into a high-bay storage system which would be unfeasible to access using fork-lift trucks or any other means.

Automation software

Software or cloud-based SaaS solutions are used for logistics automation which helps the supply chain industry in automating the workflow as well as management of the system.[1] There are few generalized software available in the new market in the said topology. This is because there is no rule to generalize the system as well as work flow even though the practice is more or less the same. Most of the commercial companies do use one or the other of the custom solutions.

But there are various software solutions that are being used within the departments of logistics. There are a few departments in Logistics, namely: Conventional Department, Container Department, Warehouse, Marine Engineering, Heavy Haulage, etc.

Software used in these departments
Improving Effectiveness of Logistics Management
  1. Logistical Network
  2. Information
  3. Transportation
  4. Sound Inventory Management
  5. Warehousing, Materials Handling & Packaging

See also

References