The work station of the future in logistics and production
Let me introduce myself – my name is Smart Worker. I am the new generation of labour in production and logistics. We are living in exciting times, aren’t we? Everything is integrated, new types of businesses, new demands and new technologies are constantly appearing. Needless to say, this is affecting the working environment of people working in industrial environments.
Come along with me on a tour through the workplace of tomorrow and discover:
What does the work station of the future look like?
What technologies am I working with?
What kinds of tasks am I doing?
What motivates me, and how do I learn?
How does this working environment increase the quality and efficiency of my work?
What role will people have in the warehouse of the future?
The working environment for people in logistics and production is transforming – out with strenuous, monotonous tasks and in with creative decision makers. In the industrial setting of the future, these tasks will be handled by humans cooperating with intelligent technologies:
- Warehouse worker
- Warehouse manager, shift supervisor, logistics manager
- Service technicians
Robotics and assistant systems provide support
Work smart, not hard! That about sums up what I do. It means that I let the robots do the strenuous and monotonous tasks. My job: I work as a service technician and do the servicing and repair tasks. When my robot colleague literally has a screw loose or needs a software update, he’s always got me to help him out.
During maintenance, I get smart support from the assistance system with augmented reality technology, for example, using smart glasses. These intelligent assistance systems provide the following support:
- Automatic diagnosis of problems
- Displaying repair manuals or video tutorials
- Remote support from experts located around the world
By the way, such assistance systems are also used for warehouse or production tasks that still need to be carried out manually. This could be the putting components together individually or checking goods, for example.
Intelligent data for logistics and production
In my world of work, everything is integrated: Man, machine, locations, goods, processes. This generates a tremendous quantity of data. How do I keep track of things in the data jungle? I get help from intelligent and highly-specialized software. This software transforms the huge data flow into intelligent information, which I can use to make important decisions. As the warehouse manager, I can plan the resources for the coming week based precisely on the calculated order peaks, for example. I can access this information in any place using any terminal. This is how the technology makes my work easier and allows me to support my company’s rising performance targets.
Mobility and flexibility raise employee satisfaction
Mobility and flexibility are two hallmarks of my day-to-day work. As a warehouse worker, I work at mobile work stations. The work stations can be placed anywhere, as and when they are needed. Additionally, software and autonomous mobile robots connect my work station with the rest of the warehouse. For example, robots bring tools, parts or goods to me, and even a snack once in a while. Sometimes, my work station is even in my hand – on my mobile phone. This makes it easy for me to switch shifts with a colleague who has the same qualifications as me. You see, not only are workplaces becoming more flexible, the workforce becomes more flexible as well. Besides, working with exciting technologies and the added plus of being able to divide my time flexibly makes my company a great place to work.
Individuality and ergonomics at the work station
Working comfortably is important to me because keeps me motivated and efficient as I work. Light, temperature, sound, working height – I can personalize all these parameters at my work station to suit my needs and current tasks. This results in many advantages:
- Ideal ergonomic working conditions
- Pleasant work environment
- Full concentration on value creating activities
- Error-free working
Speaking of which, how do I achieve error-free work? I get help from smart operating assistants such as virtual keyboards and control systems that function using gestures or tactile feedback, helping me to work without making errors. Another advantage comes from the easy operation, new interfaces and ergonomic working. Now, disabled or older people can work in warehouses or production.
The smart technologies also overcome language barriers.
Smart gadgets for interactive work
How do people learn best? How can we stay motivated and avoid errors? Intuitively, by experimenting and through receiving feedback. By gaining experience. My work is a whole new ball game now – and with good reason: The workflow is designed according to the principle of gamification. But how does this really work? In truth, a little like a computer game, but with the goal of completing certain work tasks with no errors and within the designated time. My personal virtual assistant also supports me and is my coach and motivator at the same time. It’s connected with me through a wearable device and tells me when I make a mistake. It also gives me tips for correction. Sometimes it even tells me a joke, to keep me motivated. It knows when I am tired and need a break. So you see, it’s really more than just work – it’s an experience. Surrounded by smart technologies, I am glad to go to work every day and give my all to make your business successful.
You see, the future holds a lot of new things for us. The working environment in logistics and production will change, and as humans, we will continue to play an important role. Therefore, we’ll see you in the future!
Work smart, not hard.
With best regards,
Further reading recommendations
P.S: How do you envision the workplace of the future? At KNAPP, we look forward to discussing ideas and requests with you to create new solutions. Get in touch with us at firstname.lastname@example.org.