Packing Slip Automation System Aims to Double Warehouse Packing Station Productivity

PSI's Autoslip Express prepares shipping documents to improve order fulfillment process

PSI's Autoslip Express prepares shipping documents to improve order fulfillment process

Mississauga, ON — July 19, 2006 — The continued expansion of the Internet has created amazing sales opportunities, especially for retailers who offer their products for sale online. But as "e-tailing" has continued to grow, increased pressure has been placed on warehouse packing station operators who must handle more individual orders than ever before.

Consumer demand for fast order delivery has amplified this pressure, since it directly influences overall customer satisfaction. As a direct result of this, companies have had to increase productivity in distribution centers to further minimize the critical time gap between order placement and shipment.

With these challenges in mind, PSI Engineering has launched its Autoslip Express packing slip system to help distribution centers increase productivity at packing stations without causing large disruptions in operations or having to further allocate space for large machinery in already crowded warehouses.

Doubling Productivity

Designed specifically for the packing station, the Autoslip Express is a standalone version of PSI's inline Autoslip packing slip system. On demand, the Express prints, folds and inserts up to four shipping documents into an adhesive pouch. The "tamperproof" pouch is applied to the shipping box by the packing station operator.

PSI Engineering asserts that automating the creation of packing slips allows packing station operators to be twice as productive compared to the manual creation process, improving the order fulfillment cycle time of a distribution center as well as preparing e-tailers to capitalize on future opportunities in the growing mail-order industry. Optimizing packing station productivity increases the order capacity a distribution center can handle without increasing capital expenditure for more space or labor resources, PSI Engineering said.

No Shutdown Required

Unlike other warehouse automation projects, which typically require a shutdown of an entire portion of the packaging line, an Autoslip Express system can be integrated into an existing warehouse with minimal downtime, according to PSI Engineering. Timing the installation of the Autoslip Express with the warehouse's slowest time of year is not necessary, since the system is a part of the packing station, not directly connected to the line. This can save considerable time and implementation resources, the solution provider said.

"The e-tailing business has grown over the last few years, and all signs point to this trend continuing for a number of years," said Tom Napier, automation division manager at PSI. "In order to handle the demands of tomorrow's online customers, distribution centers must find ways to increase their productivity today."

PSI Engineering said that the Autoslip Express should have a payback period of less than one year.

Additional Articles of Interest

— Thinking about automating your warehousing operations? Take a strategic stance with this helpful guide: "The Analyst Corner: Warehouse Management," in the April/May 2006 issue of Supply & Demand Chain Executive.

— Think your distribution operations have been put to the test? A closer look at the U.S. Army's multi-million-square-foot distribution center that was established in Kuwait two years ago to support Operation Iraqi Freedom provides some insight for companies looking improve distribution operations under harsh conditions. Read more in "Lessons from the Operation Iraqi Freedom Theater Distribution Center to Improve Your Supply Chain Operations," an exclusive.