For many distribution and fulfillment operations, effective order consolidation is the last thing standing between them and consistently satisfied customers. Regardless of how effective their upstream picking processes are, if downstream order consolidation and pack-out capabilities are lacking, operators are placing the effectiveness of their entire order fulfillment operation at risk. Honeywell Intelligrated has extensive expertise in order consolidation using a combination of configurable put walls, reliable put-to-light technology and robust warehouse execution software.
The term order consolidation refers to the process of aggregating order demand from various picking zones of a facility into discrete, completed orders. In today’s high-speed, e-commerce environments — where high-volume, mixed- and single-item orders are the norm, and seasonal variations and flash promotions lead to constantly changing SKU profiles — put wall order consolidation has emerged as one of the most effective methods for maintaining order throughput and accuracy.
In much the same way, kitting requires consolidation of a set of items for a common purpose, such as a kit designed for a manufacturing process or a set of clothes assembled for a specific activity. Since the process involves consolidating items into a single container, put walls are ideal for assembling kits comprised of a variety of order profiles.
Honeywell Intelligrated order consolidation technologies include:
- Configurable put walls
- Put-to-light technologies
- Momentum™ warehouse execution system (WES)
Put Wall Advantages
With interactive put-to-light displays that direct end users to place items into specific cubbies, and configurable hardware that allows end users to change cubby sizes in accordance with product and order profiles, put walls are greatly streamlining the order consolidation and pack-out processes. By combining put wall and Momentum WES technologies, Honeywell Intelligrated is adding real-time intelligence to put wall assignment for significant utilization improvements of all assets related to order consolidation.
WES-enabled put wall order management is designed to keep fulfillment activities moving by utilizing each cubby in a put wall, rather than delaying fulfillment processes until an entire wave of orders can be completed. Momentum assigns individual orders to the first available put wall cubbies — even across multiple put walls. This allows more flexibility in order picking, consolidation and pack-out assignments.
Put walls can also be deployed to support store replenishment and direct-to-consumer fulfillment within the same DC. In a put-to-store scenario, designated put wall cubbies are assigned for specific store orders; those cubbies remain permanently assigned, even after each order is complete.
Put wall advantages include:
- Adapt to changing product and order profiles by adjusting put wall shelf and cubby configurations as needed
- Minimize the DC footprint and overall investment by optimizing put wall configuration and limiting the number of put walls required
- Expedite the fulfillment of priority orders
- Reduce congestion by assigning orders to individual cubbies
- Fulfill direct-to-consumer and store replenishment
- Allows flexibility and optimization of fulfillment processes