Hot off the shelf - SnapFulfil reveals top fulfillment trends for 2019
Warehouse management solution specialist, SnapFulfil, has published its top trends to look out for in warehouse management and fulfillment for 2019.
According to SnapFulfil CEO, Tony Dobson, demand for fast and flexible delivery options, coupled with the growth of artificial intelligence and big data will continue to drive change in the industry.
He said: "From shifting consumer expectations, to a growing dependence on data and innovative technologies, 2018 marked a dramatic change in retail and warehouse management.
"When it comes to managing an effective fulfillment operation, the goal posts are shifting faster than ever before and a company's ability to succeed in this new era will largely depend on its ability to harness these emerging trends."
SnapFulfil's top tips for emerging trends in 2019:
Amazon has changed the online shopping game. Consumers now demand more options, faster delivery and more accurate fulfillment to deliver the ultimate customer experience.
To keep up with competitors and consumer expectations, retailers are looking for ways to accelerate delivery times while keeping costs low. Many are introducing "buy online, pick-up in-store" offerings to merge traditional brick-and-mortar shopping with eCommerce.
Consumers' increasing desire for convenience has continued to drive the subscription commerce (subcom) industry's growth. In 2018, one-third of subcom offerings believed their business would double within a year. However, it's important for retailers to fully understand the fulfillment challenges of subcom before jumping in.
Robots and artificial intelligence
According to a study by Allied Market Research, the market for warehouse robots is expected to achieve a nearly 12 percent compound annual growth rate from 2016 to 2023.
This massive digital shift will mean a new age of fulfillment – one rooted in efficiency. As workers grow more comfortable with advanced warehouse solutions, it's becoming clear automated processes and robotics are transforming the role of the warehouse worker, not supplanting it.
Warehouse managers have access to vast troves of data, but that information isn't useful if it's inaccessible. Deeper visibility into inventory and warehouse processes can help optimize fulfillment operations and subsequently contribute to the bottom line. Businesses must learn how to use a warehouse management system to interpret customer and process data, as well as make insightful decisions.