Voice Data Collection for Picking and Putaway
Year after year, you’re challenged to find ways to boost worker productivity by five percent or more. You may have considered voice integration in the past, but there’s great news: voice has evolved. With BCC Distribution and Velocity Voice from Ivanti, formerly Speakeasy, companies around the globe are realizing the benefits of full-featured voice enablement that can be deployed in just a few weeks, at a fraction of the cost of traditional voice applications. Best of all, BCC Distribution can activate voice to be used in conjunction with your barcode scanning systems and SAP mobility solutions already in place, or add voice as you refresh your mobile devices, including those running the Android operating system.
- Accelerate picking speed and order accuracy by voice-enabling telnet (via SAP Console) and browser apps (via SAP ITSmobile) leveraging BCC Distribution and the Velocity platform. Ivanti’s Velocity Voice simply integrates with existing deployments without changes to host apps.
- You don’t need to abandon investments you’ve already made. You’re enhancing their value. Velocity Voice works with your existing RF barcode scanning implementation using Velocity. Add voice where voice makes sense—alongside barcode scanning, RFID, and more for an optimized data-collection solution that accelerates productivity.
- Adding voice not only helps optimize workflows for speed, voice boosts accuracy in order fulfillment tasks. Warehouse and distribution operations realize picking accuracy as high as 99.95%.
The Mobile User Experience (UX)
An Untapped Advantage
One area of ERP workflow that is ripe for productivity gains is the User Experience on the mobile data-entry device, or mobile RF barcode scanner. These mobile devices may be handheld barcode scanners, forklift-mounted barcode scanners, rugged tablets, wearables, or other mobile computers employed to interface with your ERP system. Although your ERP system is providing the back-end logic to control all operations, it is on this mobile device UX (“the Edge”) where the rubber meets the road. These mobile devices determine how, when, and where material handlers move product through the supply chain. Therefore, making this UX more efficient can extract huge productivity gains from existing ERP implementations. Assume a material handler is in the warehouse using a traditional barcode scanner with the SAP ERP system. In many cases the user interface is HTML or browser based. As such, the handler’s interface to the SAP software is via some type of HTML browser on the mobile barcode scanner.
An Example of Common Challenges
Right away this presents several challenges. First off, the screen real estate on all barcode devices is radically different from a PC or laptop screen. As such, the workflow screens presented on the barcode device are limited to fit only a select amount of information on the screen. This means material handlers may need to scroll or advance the screen to find the parts of the page they need to execute their current workflow. In some cases, time spent by the material handler navigating on the device is NOT productive, and back-end automation may not be permissible.
Many standard ERP workflow screens supplied by the ERP solution itself are generic, meaning they present ALL options to a worker or handler that may only need specific options at a certain step. This leaves the material handler struggling to remember exactly which menu option to select at a given step, increasing the likelihood of introducing errors—errors that cost time and money.
For these reasons and many more—including generic keyboards that only degrade productivity—huge gains can be realized from re-creating the UX on the mobile barcode scanner at the point of entry for the material handlers. These gains have been proven to increase speed, reduce error rates, and even cut training time completely
To further facilitate productivity with new mobile devices and processes, data capture must be streamlined. You don’t want workers pinching and zooming due to page-fit issues, as this takes them away from the task at hand—whether they’re working with a handheld barcode scanner, lift-mounted device, or enterprise tablet. What’s more, many warehouses employ seasonal workers to manage peaks and troughs, often not operating in their primary language, and it’s evident that warehouse digitization is at a tipping point, and could cause more problems than solutions. For optimal productivity, businesses need accurate WMS integration to help ensure shipments come and go on time to maintain customer satisfaction.
On modern mobile barcode devices, the Ivanti Velocity software toolset presents a more efficient and productive UX for SAP S/4HANA and SAP ECC using IM, WM, and EWM for SAP ITSmobile (HTML web browser) or SAP Console (Telnet – Terminal Emulation) applications. It provides all the following and more:
- Changing the UX from a key-based interface to a touchscreen-friendly user experience.
- Creating enhanced screens on Android, iOS, and Windows 10 mobile devices.
- Remove unnecessary screen items to keep material handlers on task.
- It can even voice-enable SAP IM, WM or EWM workflows to make the entire experience voice input/output.