A leading global eTailer wanted to optimize their Warehouse picking algorithm to reduce picking time and fatigue, and thereby speed up deliveries. Picking cost also needed to be reduced, which depended on the distance travelled within the warehouse and staff-productivity around differing shelf-heights and stowing locations.
Taking the floor plan and picking order as inputs, the standard TSP algorithm was modified to run hierarchically and offer picking routes that address picker-fatigue and stowing locations. The algorithm was also optimised to reduce the algorithm running time for large Warehouse floor-areas from a few minutes to a few seconds.
Picking costs covering staff costs and productivity enhancements were reduced by 20-35%.