New Warehouse Scanning System
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New Warehouse Scanning System Transforms Manufacturing Firm

Americo, a U.S. manufacturer that produces specialty chemicals and fine chemical products, uses a state-of-the-art scanning system to manage their warehouse inventory and chemical mixing operations. 

 

Scanner App

The tasks affiliated with expediting high-quality product orders can be significantly time-consuming and require tremendous amounts of paperwork, often falling on the shoulders of warehouse and supply chain workers to manually manage and track fulfillment stages.

 

Automating aspects of the Work Assignment process and eliminating paper printouts in the warehouse for production orders enables Americo to track completed work and estimate future work much more accurately and ensures employees have the support to efficiently manage some of the disruptions to the manufacturing process.

The Process

Verbal assignment is given to each new work order with a large paper packet of the mixing instructions and time slots to manually track the stages of completion. Bottlenecked by outdated technology and a scanning mobile application with limited visibility to insights, Americo sought to replace their scanners, tablets and printers with a state-of-the-art, scalable scanning system that provided new work assignments tracking, scheduling functionality and forecasting capabilities.

The Team

PSC delivered this project using The PSC Way: our transparent delivery approach that provides clients flexibility to adjust scope while maximizing their budget.

PSC Way teams ensure quality and transparency with project management, business analysis and quality assurance workstreams.

The Engagement

The PSC Way

  • An iterative process with frequent solution demos for client business stakeholders, allowing for feedback after every iteration.
  • Azure DevOps tracks Application Lifecyle Management from user stories to automated deployments and testing.
  • We host Executive Review meetings with executive leadership from PSC and our client, providing an opportunity to speak candidly about team performance and project direction.
  • We send Sprint Summary Reports after every sprint with burndown, velocity and backlog metrics to keep project on time and on budget.

The Solution

Following process mapping exercises with key stakeholders, PSC recommended implementing new Zebra scanning devices to streamline day-to-day management and build a Xamarin based mobile application, allowing for new work orders to be managed digitally and monitored with greater visibility and ease for In-Process orders.   

The new application:

  • Supports the warehouse production order fulfillment process and work assignment process
  • Provides rollups of production orders and their current status in a single interface
  • Generates an integrated timer, allowing employees to track tasks and chemical mixing times without manually recording
  • Automates forecasting capabilities with real-time data, allowing more accurate estimations for future work and labor supply

The Results

PSC replaced the antiquated scanners and deployed the new mobile scanning application on-time and managed to come in underbudget, launching  portable, easy-to-use scanning devices that can easily be deployed into the existing infrastructure and flexible to integrate into multiple environments. The new system features auto-generated tracking with forecasting capabilities –and the entire process now lives in a single, streamlined and secure application, enabling more accurate team management and greater visibility into warehouse operational efficiencies.

Pains

  • Legacy handheld scanning devices
  • Relied on manual, spreadsheet-based collaboration and inventory data entry
  • Large paper packets used to schedule, assign and provide chemical mixing instructions for orders
  • Warehouse employees and managers checked multiple systems of record to learn the status of In-Process orders, tasks and future work estimations
  • Resource-intensive, manual processes lacked transparency and were subject to human error

 

Gains

  • Single application to manage the entire order fulfillment process
  • Auto-generated mixing instructions and timers used to track production order tasks and can be recorded directly in the application
  • Automated labor forecasting capabilities provide real-time details for enhanced visibility into the fulfillment process
  • Flexible, scalable architecture supports ability to assess new orders, material needs and labor supply
  • Automated process minimizes human error while guarantees compliance, safety and timely delivery

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