Due to unsystematic stock-keeping, qualified employees were too much involved in the search for the right material for the next production step.
ALTRAD plettac Production GmbH produces innovative scaffolding systems. Since scaffolds require individual production, there are no standardized processes. The company was faced with the challenge that the "search effort" in the warehouse became so great that this time of "lost" working hours caused immense costs.
With Bluetooth technology and iBeacons, companies of all sizes can cost-effectively implement a real-time locating system
The company found an indoor tracking system that could be implemented without major implementation effort and costs. The RTLS (Real-Time Locating System) helps to locate production goods in the warehouse or in production - without search effort, at any time, up to the minute and in any room. It can also be used across companies without integration and works with the Bluetooth technology of iBeacons, which send a unique signal. Standard mobile phones are used as receivers, which are installed in the warehouse according to the space available. As soon as a signal is picked up by two or more mobile phones, the exact position can be determined and displayed to the user. In addition, the iBeacons are linked to the container numbers so that all kinds of objects/goods can be found. This also works without wifi via mobile data cards. Employees can use smartphones/tablets to make bookings from material to containers and thus have an overview of material movements and the location of containers. All that is required on the mobile device/tablet is to download an app as well.
Sample calculation: If previously 10 employees were each occupied on average 1 hour per day searching for materials, an hourly wage of 25 € results in annual costs of 62,500 €.
If we assume a regular number of pieces (material, pallets, containers) of 350 pieces, the costs for this amount to 12.600 € per year after implementation of the system. This results in a payback period of 2.4 months.
Depending on the network, the solution can be used via mobile data. However, a wifi is often recommended.
The first consideration was to use RFID technology to ensure clarity in the warehouse. However, the tracking of the material did not work stable enough in the metallic environment of the scaffold manufacturer and additionally such a project would have been very investment intensive.
The materials used for the scaffolding (steel / metals) did not allow some tracking systems because the signal was distorted.
A system was required which could be used for all branches/materials, which is simple and as cost-effective as possible.
Setting up the system only required a functioning wifi in the customer's production. Due to the easy handling of the devices and the intuitive user interface of the app, there was little or no training effort at the customer's site except for a briefing.
Configuration of the digital infrastructure: