Voice-directed picking satisfies appetite for growth

Food bank uses cloud voice management suite to reduce picking shift length by 30%.

By ·

The Community FoodBank of New Jersey is a four-star rated charity serving 17 of New Jersey’s 21 counties. From two facilities with a combined footprint of 315,000 square feet, the food bank distributed more than 44 million pounds of food in the past year, and demand is expected to rise this year. Less than three months after the organization deployed a voice management suite (VMS), it has already reduced the length of picking shifts by 30% for item selectors, allowing cross-trained staff members to spend more time tending to other tasks throughout the facilities.

Previously, the paper-based process was very time-consuming for the two facilities’ 12 selectors. “From an information technology management standpoint, the system has proven to be efficient and has improved our picking time frame tremendously within our organization,” says Monique Lewis, systems administrator for the food bank.

“We’re excited about our early results, especially with respect to the positive impact the software has had on our staff,” says Michael Jordan, director of operations. “Not only have we been able to reduce the time spent picking, but our team members have adapted to the software quickly and enthusiastically. Our top pickers are looking forward to using the new system during our upcoming busy season.”

The cloud-based VMS (Voxware, voxware.com) allows the food bank to use voice-directed picking without the need to build supporting data warehouses or other technology infrastructure. The voice system is integrated into the food bank’s enterprise resource planning (ERP) system and uses an additional wireless system in both locations to maintain the connection to the system. The food bank is now training additional selectors on the voice system.

About the Author

Josh Bond, Senior Editor
Josh Bond is Senior Editor for Modern, and was formerly Modern’s lift truck columnist and associate editor. He has a degree in Journalism from Keene State College and has studied business management at Franklin Pierce University.

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