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Healthcare Case Study

UPS Healthcare improves picking time with LocusBots

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“In anything that we do for UPS Healthcare, we obviously make sure that we don't create any risk for our customer or their end customer. That must be number one. We have a validation process to make sure we don't create any risk and our processes function properly before we begin deployment into actual production.”

Chad Wells, Senior Operations Manager.

UPS Healthcare

Overview & Challenge

UPS Healthcare is a global healthcare logistics leader with nearly 17 million square feet of globally licensed healthcare distribution space to handle pharmaceutical products and medical devices.

The UPS Healthcare Louisville, KY facility is very diverse with cage products, DEA products, pharmaceutical products, animal health products, and medical devices that ship out within the United States. This facility also features multiple freezers, and cooler storage, which is 2 to 8 degrees Celsius. Before automation, warehouse associates used a scan gun and pulled a big metal cart with three shelves on it for products. On average, associates could walk 10,000 steps in a single shift.

“One of the reasons we were looking at an AMR solution was to allow our employees to focus on value-added tasks instead of walking the warehouse while pushing carts,” said Mike Packer, Director of Healthcare Automation and Implementations.

The team knew that they needed a new solution to ease the strain on employees, while also being safe, compliant, and capable of operating in cold storage locations.

Learn more about Cold Storage and Robots in a Warehouse:

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Critical Factors for Implementing Automation
at UPS Healthcare


Order Accuracy



Healthcare logistics company improves picking time with LocusBots

Locus deployed a warehouse execution platform and 24 autonomous mobile robots (AMRs) along with a suite of dashboards and actionable reporting tools at UPS Healthcare’s Louisville, KY facility.

The UPS Healthcare team chose Locus Robotics after their industrial engineering team showed them the implemented Locus solution at one of their nonhealthcare facilities. “Once we saw how the bots were performing on that account, we saw the value of deploying them in our healthcare operation,” said Wells.

Since associates are no longer needed to push heavy carts with the bots carrying products, there has been a positive impact on employee safety and injury numbers. The facility had previously experienced a number of push-pull injuries, which have nearly disappeared since the implementation of Locus technology.

For traceability, the bot captures the associate’s information and what was picked so that it can be held in the warehouse management system for future historical record.

The bots work throughout the facility, including cold storage, which was the first use of the bots in a cold chain environment for a unique and compliant solution. They operate in and out of the cooler environment, where the team processes products onto the bots. The bots enter the cooler through an automatic door.

Implementing the Locus solution helped UPS Healthcare enhance their order accuracy, speed, and quality. In the six months after launching the bots, they saw a 54% increase in lines picked, enabling them to deliver products to customers faster.


Increase in Lines Picked

Improved order accuracy

Improved employee morale

Improved data insights

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