The Industry 4.0 – buzzword, promise and challenge. An intelligent material flow in production supply is a decisive step in this direction.
Supply chain management in production has so far been carried out almost exclusively manually. Employees are exposed to high loads, on average they have to move loads of up to four tons per shift. The change to Industry 4.0 requires a fundamental rethink here: adaptation to increasing variance in production and thus more flexibility and automation in replenishment.
No two cars are the same anymore, the trend is towards customer-specific mass production. As a result, the demand for materials is becoming ever more dynamic – classic, static supply chain management consumes too many resources.
The cost pressure in production is high. Manual replenishment via pick carts or tugger trains is expensive, inflexible and requires a lot of space. If no sensible, efficient ways of saving costs are found, margins continue to decline.
Due to demographic change and challenging working conditions, qualified employees for replenishment in production are increasingly difficult to find and demand high salaries. Heavy burdens such as non-ergonomic work and shift work make the search even more difficult.