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3PL Case Study

Global Freight Management Hersden

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The Locus solution has been a big success and is doing exactly what we thought it would do.

Will Todd, Director

Global Freight Management

Overview & Challenge

Global Freight Management Hersden is a third-party logistics (3PL) provider that offers complete warehousing and distribution services for a diversified list of companies, including an internet retailer of toy trains, cars, and airplanes through their Canterbury, UK warehouse. 

The internet orders have increased over time, and customers expect to receive the orders quickly. With the increasing orders, Global Freight Management needed to improve their capacity to pick the small orders. 

Before the facility was automated, those orders were picked by associates who pushed and pulled trolleys. This was physically tough on associates, as the trolleys would hit and run over their ankles and feet while they brought the trolleys over to the packers, unloaded it, and then took another trolley back out into the aisles for more picks. 

As the team considered options on how to increase their order capacity, Will Todd, Director of Global Freight Management Hersden researched robotics and came across Locus Robotics in his search. The sales representative at Locus took Will to a client to see the LocusBots in person and when Will saw the bots in action and spoke to the customer, he was sold on the Locus solution

Critical Factors for Implementing Warehouse Automation

Labor Retention

Speed

Peak Season

Volume Goals

Results

3PL improves picking time with LocusBots

Locus deployed a warehouse execution platform and 16 autonomous mobile robots along with a suite of dashboards and actionable reporting tools for Global Freight Management. 

With the bots, associates now walk along the warehouse without any stress, strain, or accidents. They no longer have to push or pull heavy trolleys and don’t waste time going back and forth between the offload and the picking location. Instead, the bots do the walking and carrying. 

Productivity has improved with the bots, as well as the time to fulfill orders. “If we had 1,000 internet orders come in two years ago, we would have needed a lot of people and it would have taken a few days,” said Will. “Now, with Locus, we have 1,000 orders come in and we easily fulfill those orders in less than a day with the same amount of people.” 

The same amount of associates combined with bots were even able to handle the Christmas demands for toys and airplane sets. Before Locus, the 3PL hired and had to train many new associates to handle the peak season. With Locus, the associates handled the increase in orders with ease, and any new associates were trained on the bots in just 10 minutes. 

Associates, managers, and executives alike are thrilled with the bots. The managers and associates are able to view real-time metrics and pick maps and make decisions based on that information, while leadership gains visibility on the flow of the facility. 

Global Freight Management has some SKUs of bigger products that don’t fit on the bots. To fulfill those orders without trolleys, they’re looking at adding on the higher capacity LocusBots of Vector or Max. As the business grows and more and more business goes to smaller orders, Will can only see increasing their current number of Locus Origin bots.

10

Minutes to Train New Associates

Improved picking time

Improved peak season

Increased employee satisfaction

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