IT System designed by ALS for warehouses
- Tell us about the different IT systems designed by ALS for warehouses.
Internet of Things (IoT) is not a new advent anymore, it is the reality of modern life and business. Designed to serve customers in the most convenient way, the link between devices are aimed to minimize the human involvement and increase the operation process. That is what logistics operations have successfully implemented in their day-to-day activities.
Speaking about air cargo terminals and high bay warehousing, the IT-infrastructure is fully based on the principles of IoT. Taking into consideration the staff availability, high cost of equipment and their breakdown, such machines as Elevating Transfer Vehicle (ETV) and Automated Storage and Retrieval System (ASRS) are built to speed up and effectively operate the material flow inside the warehouse by using the latest technology currently available.
The storage, transfer, sorting and retrieval of cargo between the warehouse and the landside or airside is fully automated with interfaces to the airline and customers. All vehicle movements are guided by the Inventory Control System without human interface but with a possibility of operator override in manual mode in case of an emergency.
Talking about the recent ALS software integration this year, we can name:
- ORACLE database used for the ASRS system
- Internal NAS WMS with Microsoft database used for machines and warehouse handling
- Phone Applications to handle semi-automated car park systems for private homes
- 2. Does ALS offer any training programs, to train workers once they install the systems for a warehouse?
Clearly, the innovations and sophisticated technologies are an inevitable and necessary change on logistics market, but in the same time, it is a challenge. ALS has a training program designed for all sorts of automation technology that we design and install at our customers facility to enable their staff to handle the sophisticated but yet easy to handle once introduced to the personnel in a friendly and knowledgeable way.
You remember Bill Gates’ quote; “the first rule of any technology used in a business is that automation applied to an efficient operation will magnify the efficiency. The second is that automation applied to an inefficient operation will magnify the inefficiency”. We absolutely agree with this statement. We always say that earlier involvement of a logistics consultant at the design stage minimizes the risk of decision mistakes, whereas the after-sales support and training guarantee the most efficient systems operations and longevity of the installed solution.
- Any recent major warehouses that ALS has provided solutions for in the past year or so?
ALS expected 2018 to bring influential projects worldwide and we did introduce a few to our list of partners. Just to name a few projects this year: expansion of OSR Shuttle System for Dubai Duty Free Warehouse; Automated Pharma Warehouse in Saudi Arabia; Fully Automated Airport Cargo terminals in Muscat and Salalah; supply and installation of Airport Cargo Terminal in Dammam; installation of ASRS for WFS/BFS in Bangkok, ULD handling System for WFS Frankfurt, upgrade the facility for FedEx Dubai etc…
- Your viewpoint on adapting technology in a warehouse: what is the benefit of technology? Is it affecting job opportunities for potential employees?
The technology has been already affecting positively the logistics field since a while, especially in Europe but it does not mean at the cost of unemployment. By using automation, the warehouse might have a lot more space to offer other services that require different manpower, such as e-commerce, value added services, special picking from workstations etc…The trends are surely pointing to adopt the changes and elaborate the most efficient man-machine interface and strategy. From voice recognition to driverless trucks, the artificial intelligence definitely sharpens the market.