Building the retailer of the future: Sainsbury’s selects Körber for logistics transformation

Körber has partnered with UK supermarket chain Sainsbury’s, which also comprises general merchandise retailer Argos, to deliver K.Motion Warehouse Management System (WMS) to enable the transformation of its logistics and fulfilment networks.

In a rapidly changing business landscape, modern retailers need unified and effective warehouse management solutions to handle increasingly complex supply chains and meet evolving customer needs.

Sainsbury’s currently has a network comprising multiple legacy warehouse management solutions, which are often product type and channel specific. The implementation of the Körber WMS is a key part of the retailer’s transformation journey to a more integrated network, which will enable it to serve its stores and customers better.

The retail chain’s biggest challenge was finding a WMS adaptable enough to span the different requirements of the entire business. This encompasses multiple distribution and fulfilment centres, catering for differing product types across food, general merchandise and clothing. Additionally, temporary depots are used to provide greater capacity in the network at peak times in the year such as Christmas. Körber’s WMS met these requirements.

“Fulfilment centres in today’s business landscape need to run at peak efficiency, and solutions that seamlessly integrate processes and reduce complexity are the key to success. With our solution, we provide the agility to cater to Sainsbury’s vast network of stores and broad variety of products. This allows them to maximise fulfilment efficiency, ensuring customer satisfaction and further growth,” says Anton du Preez, Executive Vice President EMEA Sales, Körber Supply Chain Software.

The solution Körber and Sainsbury’s are co-developing will allow the retailer to make configuration changes within the system themselves. This will enable customisation to incorporate new processes unique to the business and industry and reduce lead time to change. Additionally, the software is hosted in the cloud, easily facilitating changes to the solution and deployment across multiple warehouses.

This provides Sainsbury’s with the flexibility to easily upgrade the existing configuration to new cloud hardware and leveraging the latest technologies, while changing software and database systems whenever needed to adapt to ever-changing business and customer needs.

Sainsbury’s has been a Körber customer for a number of years, benefitting from voice-directed warehouse operations and K.Sight CLASS warehouse simulation. One example of the latest technology in this regard is the Körber One Screen to Voice function for streamlined picking in the warehouse: instructions to pickers are delivered via voice commands – replacing the scan gun. This allows two-handed operations, speeds up the process and leads to fewer errors. The result is greater operational efficiency and faster fulfilment to stores and customers.

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