MODEX 2022 returned with a bang at the Georgia World Congress Center in Atlanta, March 28-31, following the cancellation of MODEX 2021 due to the pandemic. The conference attracted more than 37,000 attendees across the material handling space who were thrilled to be gathering again in person.
inVia Robotics had a major booth presence to showcase the company’s automation and robotic solutions and stage a competitive picking challenge. During the show, CEO Lior Elazary delivered high-level insights on the topic of using automation to reduce warehouse downtime as a seminar speaker.
MODEX 2022 Key Takeaway:
– Labor Shortage: One of the key takeaways from MODEX 2022, which is a recurring theme for the material handling sector, is the ongoing labor shortage. The ability for companies to attract sufficient workers is impacting warehouses, fulfillment centers and related facilities. This challenge was on the minds of many attendees. The labor issue is especially apparent as warehouse companies look to attract younger generations of workers. Attendees were encouraged to embrace automation and robotics as a strategy to help entice and retain millennial and Gen Z workers.
– Buzz Around Robotics and Automation: The variety of automation and robotics systems at the show highlighted the decisive step the supply chain is taking toward smart warehousing solutions. In addition, each phase of the operational flow is being automated as the industry is taking a broader approach to automation.
Many companies need to increase the productivity of their operations by ramping up performance levels. There was a general consensus among vendors and attendees about the immediate need to empower and enable workers to do more, in collaboration with robotics, rather than replace workers by robots and “dark warehouses.”
Step Right Up: inVia “Picking Challenge”
inVia put its innovative warehouse automation solution on full display at MODEX by holding an exciting “picking challenge” for attendees that included inVia Picker robots and the inVia Pickerwall. We created a mini version of a warehouse within our show booth space so attendees could understand the inVia AI-based system and the 4-5X productivity increases it can deliver. inVia Picker robots build a dynamic wall with each day’s set of ordered goods for warehouse workers to pick, scan and sort items for packing and shipping to customers. More than 100 show attendees competed to see if they could exceed picking rates of 600 UPH. With less than 30 seconds of training, many blew past the 600 UPH threshold, with several top performers nearing 700 UPH. The top pickers were Jasmine Brown from Grimco (602 UPH); Justin Langenfeld from SICK Sensor Intelligence (670 UPH); and the overall winner, Jisu Kim from Floatic at 685 UPH.
Seminar Highlights: Automation Cuts Warehouse Idle Time
inVia CEO Lior Elazary spoke at a MODEX seminar on the topic of “How to Use Automation to Reduce Idle Time in Your Warehouse.” Lior noted that growing consumer demand and e-commerce fulfillment have made warehouses more complex, tasked with handling thousands of SKUs in random assortments. This has created a need for more warehouse labor, amid major labor shortages.
“Smarter warehouses are needed to handle complex orders, fill the labor gap and eliminate inefficiencies such as slow cycle times, disconnected processes and inefficient use of space.”Lior described intelligent resources such as mobile tools, robots and warehouse execution systems as proven solutions to boost warehouse productivity. He touched on some of inVia’s proprietary capabilities such as inVia Pickmate and PickerWall to create better warehouse flow. These solutions help reduce idle time and maximize resource use. All warehouse moves involving goods, people and equipment are optimized, with the use of AI to chart the ideal paths to complete tasks and the best use of labor resources.
Robotics as a Service Promises Fast Return on Investment
The cost of automation was also top of mind for many supply chain professionals at MODEX. Companies are pressured to have a faster rate of return and inVia’s solution helps achieve that with inVia’s Robotics-as-a-Service model.
inVia Robotics CRO, Kurt Nantkes, talked to MHI at Modex2022 about how inVia’s customers gain a rapid return on investment and their productivity and profitability horizons are much shorter.
“What RaaS does is, it enables you to start realizing that return sometimes day-one/month-one. And we actually do RAAS by robot productivity, not per robot basis, committing to a robotic SLA.”
Thank you to everyone who came by to see us at our booth at #MODEX2022. We hope to see you soon!