Peak season is a chaotic and profitable time for the majority of retailers and the wider value chain. Websites and ecommerce engines need to be fully functioning, able to accept orders and fulfil deliveries, and warehouses and fulfilment centres need to be ready to meet customers’ delivery needs fast.
Alongside this, last-mile delivery operators need to ensure they have the right processes and systems in place to ship goods on time. In contrast, in-store retail must make sure that its warehouses are operationally capable of picking, packing, and sending goods to stores in time for shoppers to buy their products over the festive season.
Therefore, for many retailers, third-party logistics operators, warehouses, and last-mile shipment providers, organising logistics operations effectively with packaging labelling forms a crucial part of their success through and beyond the peak season. Jay Kim, Managing Director BIXOLON Europe explains the important role of using linerless mobile printers to print labels that can be used to organise warehouse operations, support last-mile delivery, and communicate with consumers.
How mobility is refining warehouse operations
Within many warehouses and fulfilment centres there are often stations placed around the distribution centre where printing takes place. This is because many sites and their operational processes have been designed for stationary label printers. While traditionally effective at printing labels, it means processes were designed around the location of printers, meaning that warehouses and staff duties were created with this in mind.
Another scenario within warehouses and fulfilment centres that is ripe for improvement is shelf labelling. Traditionally, staff would have printed labels at a stationary printing station and then would walk to each appropriate shelf and change the label, a time-consuming process.
Redesigning efficiency and productivity around mobile linerless printing
Arming staff with mobile devices and mobile linerless printers enables them to travel around warehouses and fulfilment centres freely. They have autonomy to take on more, their roles can be enhanced and they can become more productive.
Mobile, linerless printing offers cost and efficiency benefits that supersede many stationary printing solutions and processes. This is because the reels of printing paper used contain more paper to print on, and they don’t need to make space for an extra liner that backs onto the label. The paper being used is often more eco-friendly because it has no liner and because it comes from sustainable resources. Often less paper is used when printing too.
Improving communication with customers during last-mile delivery
Linerless mobile printers are increasingly being used to improve the customer communication process. A linerless label can be printed and attached to the delivery note, which is then posted through the consumer’s door. A standard setup could be designed to convey all the necessary accurate information to the customer about how they can collect their new parcel. This process can function alongside other customer proof of delivery processes and support them too.
Gone are the days when mobile printing was considered expensive and ineffective. We’ve all seen the power of mobile to transform many field service operations, warehouse, logistics, retail, and e-commerce teams are not excluded from these wins. Mobile, linerless label printers, when used alongside mobile devices in warehouses, fulfilment centres, and during last-mile deliveries, have the potential to transform operational processes.