When temperatures rise, people’s thirst for refreshing drinks increases and so does the demand for the products which are stored, picked and moved in large lot sizes at Deutsche Getränke Logistik (DGL) logistics locations. The DGL Group pools its resources under a single roof, creating integral 360-degree solution concepts for full and empty container logistics. It currently operates nineteen own locations, focusing on the regions of Bremen, Hamburg, Berlin/Brandenburg, Lower Saxony, North Rhine-Westphalia, Saxony-Anhalt, Thuringia and Schleswig-Holstein. DGL’s business operations include retail, the food service sector, the beverage wholesale trade, and forwarding and logistics. Effectively organised logistics management is the only way that the logistics provider can guarantee smooth processes and constant, reliable restocking of drinks in returnable bottles. That is why DGL has placed its trust in the LFS warehouse management system by EPG (Ehrhardt Partner Group) at its different locations for several years now. This is also the case at the group’s relatively new site in Bad Oeynhausen, put into operation in April 2022, and where the latest version of LFS is in use. Picking is carried out using the LYDIA Voice pick-by-voice solution.
DGL is a joint venture between brewers Radeberger Gruppe KG and C. & A. At the new Bad Oeynhausen site, stacks of crates several metres high are stored in the 13,000-square-metre warehouse containing a wide variety of beers, waters, spritzers, juices and lemonades. Every day an average of around 45,000 reusable containers leave the warehouse, which is divided into areas such as block storage, a walk-through rack warehouse, and a picking and restocking warehouse. DGL supplies numerous varied customer food retail outlets in eastern Westphalia from its Bad Oeynhausen location on a daily basis with 30 of its own trucks. The warehouse in Bad Oeynhausen is the first DGL location to work with the latest LFS version. This warehouse management system has been ensuring optimal processes at individual locations within the DGL Group for a number of years now. “We also opted to use LFS when we put the Bad Oeynhausen location into operation last year as it is our aim to gradually standardise logistics workflows within the DGL Group and make processes more transparent,” states Andrea Wipprecht, Head of Process Management and Warehouse Management Systems at DGL. The EPG supply chain specialists managed to implement LFS, modernise warehouse management and incorporate pick-by-voice technology at the location in just a few months. This ensures an increase in efficiency and a reduced error rate.
LFS caters to all sector-specific characteristics
LFS meets all the necessary requirements for the beverage trade with a sector-specific software module. In addition to simple handling of drinks crates and pallets, the location is able to map returned empties reception, returns management and value added service in the beverage sector very effectively. The market leader in modern beverage logistics must always be able to cope with seasonal peaks, for example. What clients particularly appreciate about LFS is that it is highly flexible, transparent and easy to control and ensures intuitive use.
LYDIA Voice increases efficiency in picking
LYDIA Voice also works without the need for any voice practice exercises or lengthy training sessions. The pick-by-voice solution is not dependent on a specific speaker, meaning picking employees are able to work efficiently immediately. At the moment, the Bad Oeynhausen location only uses German in the picking area; however, the aim is to add other languages to the system in the future. Order picking in Bad Oeynhausen is carried out with what are known as long-fork trucks, onto which two pallets with full crates of beverages fit. LYDIA Voice brings a clear advantage for employees: Picking drinks crates is physically demanding. The whole process becomes much more complicated and significantly slower if you also need to carry lists or mobile data recording devices around at the same time. With LYDIA Voice, employees benefit from excellent ergonomics. Pickers’ hands are free and a voice command leads them to the next pallet or storage space.
Seamless connection to EPG Suite modules easily established
Additional products from the EPG ONE Suite, such as LYDIA Voice, play a pivotal role in expanding and standardising warehouse management for equipment at DGL’s locations. EPG ONE covers all areas in the supply chain so that other products such as the TMS transport management system can be incorporated at any time. With the aid of intelligent forklift management, TMS reduces the number of empty runs significantly and optimises warehouse processes further, thereby eliminating unnecessary trips and costly waiting and idle times.
International Shipping System for warehousing-specialist
The regional company Borchers Warehousing Solutions also forms part of the DGL Group. This company is the warehousing specialist within the group. It serves completely different client needs compared to DGL’s logistics location in Bad Oeynhausen. For example, Borchers Warehousing Solutions organises the complete contract logistics for an online retailer that provides food service businesses with an extensive range of high-quality catering equipment via an online shop. Together with Borchers Warehousing Solutions, this retailer uses EPG’s International Shipping System (ISS) for shipping logistics. ISS is EPG’s multi-carrier shipping software. The solution ensures, for example, that Borchers Warehousing Solutions always works with the current, compliant shipping labels used by courier and shipping service providers.