Title: Warehouse layout implications on picking distance: case of human factor

Authors: Olli-Pekka Hilmola; Andres Tolli

Addresses: Estonian Maritime Academy, Tallinn University of Technology, Kopli 101, 11712 Tallinn, Estonia; Lappeenranta University of Technology, Kouvola Unit, Prikaatintie 9, FIN-45100 Kouvola, Finland ' Estonian Maritime Academy, Tallinn University of Technology, Kopli 101, 11712 Tallinn, Estonia

Abstract: Efficiency of warehousing work is in great demand as it has high importance in its total costs. Quick response systems have emphasised that long-term warehousing ought to decrease, but on the other hand, these streamlined systems lead to higher amount of handling work. So, transactions increase, but amounts per picking tend to decrease. Picking work itself continues to hold significance. We used a computer program to test five different layouts from which picking work of ten items in randomised locations were completed. Trials contain optimal solution and human (students) made routes. Research shows that warehouse layout and size drive picking distance. Human side of the work illustrates that human influenced picking decisions do differ from optimal, but not that much on less complex layouts. Even in the case of more demanding layouts, picking performance difference is not that great, if picking training takes place.

Keywords: warehousing; costs; optimisation; human factors; warehouse layout; picking distance; warehouse size; picking decisions; facilities layout; training.

DOI: 10.1504/WRITR.2016.078138

World Review of Intermodal Transportation Research, 2016 Vol.6 No.1, pp.43 - 58

Received: 23 Mar 2015
Accepted: 20 Oct 2015

Published online: 03 Aug 2016 *

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