Productivity in warehouses increased by an average 15% during the pilot programme © Deutsche Post DHL Group
Productivity in warehouses increased by an average 15% during the pilot programme © Deutsche Post DHL Group

DHL smart glasses ‘new standard’ in logistics

4 August 2017

Augmented reality supported smart glasses will be the new standard in logistics, according to global logistics giant DHL Supply Chain.

DHL Supply Chain, logistics specialist arm of Deutsche Post DHL Group, said after successfully completing global pilots, the company would be expanding its “Vision Picking” solution in more warehouses around the globe, establishing a new standard in order picking for the industry. 

During the pilot, productivity increased 15% on average, said Markus Voss, chief operating officer of DHL Supply Chain.

The smart glasses provide visual displays of order picking instructions along with information on where items are located and where they need to placed on a cart, freeing pickers’ hands of paper instructions, according to the company.

The pilot showed clear benefits, freeing pickers’ hands of paper instructions and allowing them to work more efficiently, said Voss.

“Digitalisation is not just a vision or program for us at DHL Supply Chain, it’s a reality for us and our customers and is adding value to our operations on the ground,” he said.

“Customers have been very happy about the productivity gains and are equally excited about using innovative technology at their warehouses.”

The pilot program ran across the US, mainland Europe and the UK throughout different industries, including technology, retail and consumer.

As well as increased productivity during the pilot, higher accuracy rates were recorded and onboarding and training times were halved, Voss added.

“We are very satisfied and happy that the pilot phase went so well and that we can now say augmented reality technology is one of our standard offering at DHL Supply Chain,” he said.

DHL worked alongside three partners in the pilot phase, with Ubimax, supplier of industrial wearable computing, providing the augmented reality software xPick and glass developer Glass Enterprise Edition and software developer Vuzix providing the hardware.

The company is now looking to expand the technology. 

“Further proofs of concept running in Asia and Australia with other partners show similar promising benefits,” it said.

“Following the success of its Vision Picking program, DHL is looking into additional applications for augmented and virtual reality such as training, maintenance and dimension calculations and more.” 

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