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Automated Warehouses and Automatic Guided Vehicles

The Vast Possibilities with WMS Integration

Just about every warehouse has a Warehouse Management System (WMS) of some sort. This essentially means a computer is behind the scenes ensuring business runs smoothly. In basic terms, a WMS helps optimize all warehouse processes.

When Automatic Guided Vehicles (AGVs) are integrated into a warehouse, the possibilities with WMS integration are endless. This integration allows visibility into the materials in stock within a facility, where they are located, and how much of any given material is in a location. Our specialty is building custom AGVs. An extension of this is also how these AGVs uniquely interact with the WMS through software solutions built specifically for your needs that you will control after system acceptance. This means you are not locked into a particular vendor for support.

The possibilities are endless when it comes to integrating AGVs into a current system. If a lights out facility is the goal (fully automated to a point that a facility can be run without any lights on for a period of time), we can write custom software that sits between inventory systems/SAP/WMS/WCS/ERP & sales order system, to produce product movement that runs seamlessly without human intervention creating a truly autonomous warehouse.

Traffic Manager: Oversee All Operations with One System

The traffic manager oversees all operations. The implemented traffic manager system interacts with each aspect of the warehouse ensuring each component of the system is doing its part. It is responsible for coordinating how the vehicles move within a facility, charging vehicles automatically when necessary, sending notifications regarding the statuses of each job and much more. With a smart system like this set-in place, it is possible to remove humans out of the equation. This allows the vehicles to run operations smoothly, freeing up personnel to focus on other aspects of the business. For example, an order for a product comes in electronically which notifies the traffic manager. The traffic manager then tells an AGV to pick up the product and load it on the truck. After completion, the system is updated with the status of the product.

The Endless Possibilities of Custom Software

The majority of AGV vendors do not write custom integration software, so it’s up to the end user to produce. AIM’s business model is 180° from the norm, and we thrive on the creative side of software integration. From a technical standpoint, we can integrate with APIs and write to a database directly, OPC tags, standard web communication, essentially whatever a customer wants, can be done. The more complex a project becomes naturally there is a corresponding cost. The ROI of having a seamlessly running automated warehouse pays for itself though rather quickly. Check out our ROI calculator to get an idea of how AGVs quickly pay for themselves.

How Can a Fully Automated Warehouse Benefit Your Operations?

Interested in learning more about how your warehouse can benefit from AGVs and WMS integration? Click here to schedule a call with our expert today.

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