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Technology within the warehouse

Today’s warehouses are full of technology. When you place an order on the internet or go into a store to pick up an item watch how these orders are picked in the warehouse and made ready for despatch.

The following videos will be of use in helping you understand the different processes and technology used in warehouses to help improve efficiencies and reduce the time from order to delivery.

 Voice technology

This video compares the use of voice technology with bar code scanning. The operator receives instructions via a headset rather than having to read it on a piece of paper or a screen. The operators are also hands-free enabling them to pick up items with both hands – a major advantage.

YouTube: Voice Picking vs RF Scanning YouTube: Voice Picking vs RF Scanning


This video discusses the potential use of radio frequency identification technology within a warehouse. This technology was supposed to reduce the use of barcodes in logistics and retail, replacing them with tiny transponder chips which can hold a large amount of information. Unfortunately, these tags are still too expensive compared to bar codes and there are difficulties reading the information when these tags are close to water or metal. When you next buy an item of clothing see if you can find the RFID tag.

YouTube: RFID - Technology Video YouTube: RFID - Technology Video


This video shows how DHL and Ricoh are moving forward in terms of technology within the warehouse. The introduction of Google Glass showed how data can be viewed without looking at a hand-held screen for example. This hands free application and the ability to capture images is a significant advantage for warehouse operations.

YouTube: Vision Picking at DHL - Augmented Reality in Logistics YouTube: Vision Picking at DHL - Augmented Reality in Logistics

Talking point

  • After watching these videos think about the advantages and disadvantages for each type of technology and share your thoughts with your fellow learners.

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This article is from the free online course:

Supply Chains in Practice: How Things Get to You

The University of Warwick