Types of Automation Used in Fulfillment Warehouses


Types of Automation Used in Fulfillment Warehouses

Uncover the diverse types of automation revolutionizing the logistics landscape. From robotics to conveyor systems, advanced technologies shape modern fulfillment centers for unparalleled efficiency, accuracy, and speed. Whether you’re a logistics professional or intrigued by the future of warehouses, this blog post will provide valuable insights into the exciting world of automation.

Warehouse automation is revolutionizing the way we manage and optimize supply chains. With seamless integration of cutting-edge technologies such as robotics, artificial intelligence, and advanced software systems, warehouse automation streamlines operations, increases efficiency, and minimizes errors. From smart inventory management to swift order fulfillment, this transformative approach enables you to meet the demands of a dynamic market with precision and speed. Welcome to a new era where warehouses don’t just store goods – they orchestrate agile, intelligent, and responsive handling of products through smart automation.


As per a research report, by the year 2025, the implementation of warehouse automation and robotics is projected to boost productivity by a range of 25% to 70% and concurrently lower operating costs by 20% to 40%.


Effortless Efficiency: Decoding Warehouse Automation


Advanced technologies are enhancing warehouse processes, either by augmenting human efforts or automating repetitive, manual tasks. Implementation of technology frees up resources from tedious responsibilities and enables them to concentrate on more intricate tasks. Warehouse automation involves the application of cutting-edge technologies and robotic systems to streamline and enhance various tasks within a warehouse, including:

  • Inventory Management
  • Order Fulfillment
  • Material Handling
  • Workforce Management

Implementing warehouse automation contributes to a decrease in manual labor. You can expedite tasks and promote efficiency by leveraging advanced technology and automated warehouse storage systems. Warehouse automation solutions help enhance productivity and accuracy, cutting labor costs and fostering improved safety measures.


As per Statista projections, the global warehouse automation market is anticipated to exceed $30 billion by 2026, showcasing substantial growth from $17.9 billion, recorded in 2022.


Unveiling the Transformative benefits of Warehouse Automation


The advantages of a robust automated warehouse system are manifold. Current warehouse automation technologies offer greater flexibility and scalability than older solutions like fixed and bulky conveyors. Operators can easily scale up by renting additional robots to meet heightened demand during peak seasons, reverting to standard capacity when demand subsides. Unlike conveyor systems, collaborative mobile robots eliminate the need for infrastructure alterations, making integrating them more straightforward.


Some of the additional benefits of warehouse automation include the following:

  • Enhanced operational efficiency
  • Reduced worker stress and exhaustion
  • Elevated worker contentment
  • Decreased incidence of injuries
  • Diminished operating expenditures
  • Augmented precision in tasks
  • Minimized shipping errors

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Selecting the appropriate warehouse automation solutions is a better financial choice, resulting in cost savings for the warehouse through decreased errors, fewer injuries, and heightened productivity.


Exploring the Diverse Types of Warehouse Automation


There are multiple warehouse automation solutions implementing diverse technologies to expedite the warehouse processes. Let’s explore the various types of warehouse automation:


Automated Dimensioning Systems


Automated dimensioning systems are crafted to capture the physical details of parcels and pallets using infrared, camera, weighing, and barcode technologies. It has two specific types, which are the following:

  • Automated Parcel Dimensioning Systems – Efficiently capturing the dimensions (length, width, and height), weight, and images of three-dimensional or irregular-shaped parcels within seconds, this system automates the time-consuming parcel dimensioning process and effectively eradicates human errors.
  • Automated Pallet Dimensioning Systems – Made for warehouse use, it automates and streamlines the processes of capturing pallet dimensions (length, width, and height), weight, and images.

Goods-to-Person (GTP) Systems


The goods-to-person approach is a highly favored warehouse automation method aimed at alleviating warehouse congestion and enhancing overall efficiency. This method incorporates the utilization of carousels, conveyors, and vertical lift systems.


Warehouse Workflows


It is a form of warehouse automation that coordinates diverse processes, helping you to reduce operational costs and time by minimizing manual task processing and amplifying efficiency and productivity. This system facilitates the automated execution of tasks leveraging specific triggers. It can include numerous events such as creating tasks and reminders to workers, sending automatic customer emails after receipt of cargo, verifying the completion of tasks, and many more.


Automatic Guided Vehicles (AGVs)


AGVs rely on magnetic strips, floor markers (stickers), wires, lasers, cameras, and various sensors to traverse a predetermined route within the warehouse. These automation systems are most effective in expansive, uncomplicated warehouse settings with designated navigation layouts. Nevertheless, AGVs are unsuitable for intricate or space-constrained warehouses with high human workers and traffic presence.


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As per a research report, the global AGV market is projected to grow at a Compound Annual Growth Rate (CAGR) of 9.7% from 2023 to 2030.


Autonomous Mobile Robots (AMRs)


AMRs (Autonomous Mobile Robots) showcase greater flexibility and intelligence than AGVs by leveraging onboard sensors, cameras, and processors for efficient navigation within a warehouse. AMRs operate dynamically, processing paths in real time. Notably, AMRs can autonomously transport materials without needing physical guides or markers. These robots are adept at addressing the specific challenges of warehouses with high-volume, high-labor requirements.


Systems for Automated Storage and Retrieval (AS/RS)


An automated storage and retrieval system, a category of GTP (Goods-to-Person) fulfillment technology, autonomously stores and retrieves goods from designated warehouse storage locations with precision, speed, and efficiency. Particularly advantageous for manufacturing and distribution facilities, AS/RS solutions conserve floor space by eliminating the necessity for extensive shelving, enhancing safety measures, and boosting overall productivity.


Warehouse Drones


Drones stand out as highly advanced warehouse automation systems, elevating the efficiency of warehouse operations. Also referred to as Unmanned Aerial Vehicles (UAVs), these sophisticated flying devices utilize optical sensors, infrared cameras, barcode scanners, RFID technology, and more to pinpoint cargo, perform inventory counts, and execute various tasks. Their automated capabilities include sending alerts if items are placed in incorrect storage locations or when products require restocking.


As per Gartner’s projections, global drone shipments are anticipated to exceed 13 million units by 2029, a substantial increase from the 989,000 recorded in 2019.


Systems for Automated Sorting


This sorting system automatically detects and categorizes products on a conveyor system, guiding them to designated warehouse areas, including:

  • Picking zone
  • Returns processing zone
  • Packing station
  • Storage facility
  • Shipping station

These warehouse automation systems employ diverse sorting methods tailored to the product’s specific characteristics by utilizing RFID, barcode scanners, and other sensors.



To sum it up, there are numerous warehouse automation options available today. So, you need to select the one that seems to be tailored to your requirements. The above warehouse automation solutions work collaboratively and seamlessly integrate with your workforce to diminish human errors, cut operational costs, mitigate safety risks, and reduce processing time. They help you enhance warehouse productivity and efficiency by streamlining processes and making them simpler, faster, and more precise.


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However, you can also outsource your warehouse management to a professional 3PL provider so that you can focus on your business. Contact XPDEL to learn how we can help you with efficient warehouse management.


About XPDEL:

XPDEL helps eCommerce brands accelerate their growth, empowering them with multi-channel fulfillment, whether shipping directly to consumers, delivering to businesses, or selling through retail stores. We are founded and operated by veterans with experience from Amazon, FedEx, UPS, JDA, Walmart, Target, and other leading companies in eCommerce and Retail. Guided by these experts, we provide customer experiences that help you grow your business.