The Area Based DC is similar to the MHE model but is different in the sense that the released picking slips are automatically released to each area of the warehouse. In other words if we have a very large warehouse we may structure the warehouse with 8 or 10 areas. Within each area we would have multiple zones and within the zines multiple bin locations.
As the order is released into a picking slip the reserved lines for picking area grouped by area. The pickers based in each area will use the scanner based “Fetch Now” function to load the next picking slip onto their name for their area.
Each area will then pick then order independently and will moved the picked products down the checkout area. During the picking process tote labels are placed on each carton of product so that the checkout area can associate the picked cartons to the original order.
At the checkout stations the cartons are handed over for final check and invoice. The scanner can be used to assign a pick to a checkout station so that we can see where the product has been placed. Also the QA audit scan function is sometimes used here to allow the checkout to pre-check totes delivered to this area.
As the totes are moved to the actual checkout station, the tote label is scanned and the PC based WMS screen shows all detailed relating to this tote (including what has been picked into it) as well as showing related totes that are complete for this order. The checkout is allowed to check and release to invoice just this tote or can pull the linked totes together and can check all of them before releasing the invoice.
The check can be a combination of physical unit checking and or mass based checking. At this time the actual carton mass is entered and the data passed to the LSP (Logistics service provider).
Invoicing is automated to that checkout stations invoice printer. The physical cartons are sealed, the invoice is place in a sleeve on the outside of one of the cartons. Each carton is given a new printed barcode customer delivery label printed as part of the checkout. These labels are used by the LSP for delivery details.