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Report finds that e-commerce and new tech is changing warehouses

Companies are integrating new technology and planning to build new warehouses in order to serve customers faster than before.

May 19, 2016 |
Report finds that e-commerce and new tech is changing warehouses

Photo: Seika/Creative Commons.

To continue to meet the needs of e-commerce, and in order to adapt to new technologies like voice-directed picking, warehouses are becoming more complex.

The Wall Street Journal analyzed a report from Zebra Technologies, a company that sells bar code scanners that track and manage packages. 

The report found that it takes 60.4 hours to train new staff to “full productivity” (up 26% from 2013), that 72% of logistics professionals expect to use voice-directed picking (headsets that give workers verbal instructions) by 2020, and that companies prefer to build new warehouses rather than expand existing ones.

More than 75% of respondents said they expect to increase their number of warehouses by 2020. About 60% said they plan to expand their existing warehouse space by the same time. In 2015, 48% of respondents said they expected to build new warehouses and 64% said they would expand existing buildings.

The Wall Street Journal notes that instead of larger facilities in traditional logistics hubs, commerce companies are opting to build smaller facilities closer to population centers. 

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