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ONE WAREHOUSE • ONE ZEBRA
ONE WAREHOUSE • ONE ZEBRA

Step 4. Advanced Inventory & Storage Capabilities

Key to achieving flawless fulfilment is real-time inventory visibility and control. To meet operational and financial requirements, companies must regularly conduct comprehensive inventory counts. When cycle counts are conducted manually, or with older or fragmented technology solutions, they can be extremely time consuming and often fraught with errors. That’s beginning to change. In the Zebra Technologies warehousing survey, respondents noted a dramatic drop in use of manual processes, with pen and paper usage going from 41% today to a predicted 12% in five years. Tellingly, cycle count motivation is evolving from concern about compliance to WMS optimisation. In the survey, respondents reported that the top two cycle-count motivating factors are reduction of out of stock conditions and ensuring WMS accuracy.

Step 4


Cycle counting challenges

For such an important aspect of efficient warehouse operations, inventory counts in many companies are stuck in the warehousing dark ages. When performed manually with pen and paper, or with isolated and aging technology, cycle counts can take anywhere from days to even weeks to complete. The long time frames and the high labour costs of outdated inventory counting processes work against the need for maintaining accurate, real-time WMS visibility and availability. The fact is, in too many warehouse and distribution centre operations, significant pain points still exist.

Cycle counting points of pain

Errors of your ways

Manual and low-tech cycle counts are costly, time consuming and error-prone. They are a major cause of the lack of accurate, real-time inventory visibility, availability and control.

Out-of-balance sheets

The absence of accurate, real-time visibility into inventory and storage affects your inventory’s valuation, which ultimately adversely affects your company’s balance sheet.

Days late, dollars short

By the time manual and other low-tech cycle counts are completed – often days or weeks – thousands of picks and putaways have taken place, resulting in inventory inaccuracies that can decrease sales and customer satisfaction.

Letter of the law

Accurate inventories are necessary for you to meet increasingly stringent regulations. The alternative is the high cost and major disruption of being forced to shut a warehouse down to do a complete physical inventory.

Cycle counting mobile and data capture solutions

When cycle counting personnel are armed with realtime access to the inventory database and advanced mobile data collection capabilities, cycle counting efficiency and accuracy are dramatically improved. Workers now utilise powerful new mobile devices, such as durable and economical handheld computers and tablets for more intuitive cycle counting and direct WMS interaction. Counts that may have taken three or four weeks in the past can now be completed in less than half a day, especially since these functions are increasingly interleaved with other types of work orders. The new level of cost-efficiency in cycle counting activities enables enterprises to take cycle counts more regularly and routinely. The resulting new level of visibility into inventory data provides a number of benefits. Better trend analysis for improved buying practices. More accurate data within your WMS and fewer out of stock conditions. Reduced inventory stocking levels. Decreased capital expenditures for holding inventory. And reduced inventory space requirements.

Mobile asset tracking solutions

Wireless and mobile solutions can completely automate the asset tracking process and provide up-to-the-minute information on the location, status and condition of totes, pallets and more through advanced data capture. When RFID tags are placed on all of these assets, they are automatically tracked as they move through the warehouse and onto the truck, and can easily be associated with a specific customer order.

The result is fully automated, accurate and cost effective tracking of your assets with virtually no manpower required. And the assets remain in your inventory for an extended period of time, reducing your total cost of ownership (TCO) and improving your return on investment (ROI).


For more information, call us on +44 (0) 1924 600 480

Leading Solution Components


RS507 Hands-free cordless imager

RS507 Hands-free cordless imager

This rugged scanner boasts advanced ergonomics and Bluetooth cordless capability, allowing unparalleled comfort and freedom of movement.


Workabout Pro 4

Workabout Pro 4

The flexibility of the Workabout Pro™ 4 enables you to supply one device to meet many requirements.


MT2000 Series handheld mobile terminals

MT2000 Series handheld mobile terminals

Combines advanced 1D/2D barcode, DPM and image capture with the ability to key in and view data – plus 802.11a/b/g and Bluetooth connectivity options.


MC9200 Mobile computer

MC9200 Mobile computer

With the rugged Zebra Technologies MC9200, take efficiency and accuracy to the next level in your most demanding environments.


Material Flow Suite

Material Flow Suite

A complete solution that leverages real-time barcode, RFID and location information to optimise material flows.


Cold chain storage challenges

The cold chain is a harsh, demanding environment. Goods must be shipped under the strictest conditions and you need to manage fluctuating temperatures and humidity levels throughout the supply chain. That’s easier said than done, especially when cold chain and dry goods are part of the same facility.

Differences in processes, workflows and technical maturity between dry goods and cold chain areas can lead to numerous issues, including inefficiencies and lack of standardisation that often result in errors that impact downstream customer service and satisfaction.

Cold chain points of pain

Extreme difficulties

Extreme cold temperatures in freezers and coolers can make it difficult for either employees or technology to put away, pick and count inventory with a high degree of accuracy. This can lead to costly out-of-stock, lost orders, lost customers and lost profitability.

Cold hands, bad data

Even under the best of conditions, manual processes are prone to error. In the cold chain, it’s even more difficult to enter data accurately while wearing gloves or with freezing fingers.

Out in the cold

Cold chain operations can be hard on technology that’s not industrial strength. Freezing temperatures and condensation caused by temperature fluctuations can result in unreliable operation in non-ruggedised mobile devices.

Historical inaccuracies

Stringent safety regulations demand that companies keep accurate historical records. The lack of accurate, real-time data in the cold chain can result in an unreliable food temperature history.

Cold chain mobile and data capture solutions

Utilising refrigerator- and freezer-compliant mobile devices and networks that can withstand low temperatures and condensation improves traceability capabilities, enhances order accuracy and speeds shipping times in cold storage environments. With reliable operation, regardless of the dramatic temperature swings, workers can quickly and efficiently enter data – even with gloved hands – by using large keys and an easy-to-use touch-screen on ergonomically designed handheld mobile computers. Additional mobility options include freezer-rated wireless equipment that allows cold chain operations to shift from batch to real-time. Plus, the addition of hands-free technology and voice or multimodal picking helps improve safety and comfort while handling cases in cold storage. Workers are able to enter, collect and use reliable data in real time, accurately monitoring and documenting perishable food and pharmaceutical temperature history throughout the cold chain.


For more information, call us on +44 (0) 1924 600 480

Leading Solution Components


VH10f Vehicle-mounted computer

VH10f Vehicle-mounted computer

Get maximum productivity and flawless fulfilment in your most challenging environments with the VH10.


OMNII XT15f Series

OMNII XT15f Series

The Omnii XT15f, uniquely adaptive by design – is designed to work in –30ºC temperatures.


AP8163 Outdoor access point

AP8163 Outdoor access point

Harsh Environments Outdoor MESH Access Point: up to 450 Mbps, tri-radio 802.11n with 3×3: 3 stream MIMO. External N-type antenna ports.


6 steps to flawless fulfilment

Step 1

Step 1. Deploy industrial wireless solutions

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Step 2

Step 2. Improve staff communications and management

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Step 3

Step 3. Streamline order picking process

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Step 4

Step 4. Advanced inventory and storage capabilities
Step 5

Step 5. Upgrade inbound handling operations

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Step 6

Step 6. Turnaround outbound handling performance

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Call us today on +44 (0) 1924 600 480