Implementation of intelligent
containers with SAP
Customer: Murrelektronik GmbH
Project duration: 3 months
With yearly revenues of 314 million euros (as of 2017), Murrelektronik is a global leader in the automation industry. The company’s concentration is on four core areas: power supply, interfaces, connecting cables and IO systems. Currently, there are five production locations (Oppenweiler and Stollberg in Germany, Stod in the Czech Republic, Atlanta in the United States, and Shanghai in China) with the highest level of technology. With over 2900 employees in 50 countries and a total of 23 subsidiaries, Murrelektronik is able to act quickly and efficiently on a global level.
Initial situation and project objective:
For production, components are provided from the SAP WM-managed warehouse. Picking is done with the help of picking containers. One employee often picks for several orders at the same time. In order not to mix the components, one container always belongs to one production order. The container passes through several stages during the picking process. The allocation to the production order takes place via printed order papers in the container. At the P.O. box system, a manual, time-consuming mapping of the container to a printed P.O. box then takes place. This procedure was error-prone and unecological, as employees had to match all labels from the mailboxes.
What did HPC do?
Through the implementation of “electronic labels (Smart tags)“, analogous to e.g. price tags in supermarkets, each tag is assigned to an order during the creation of the picking order and attached to the respective container. Through the guided picking process using a hand scanner, the tag is automatically records certain events. Thus, for example, it is possible to see at a glance where the container is located, which order it serves, how many articles should be in the container and whether there are other containers for the same order. At the post office box (delivery system of the picked orders) the picked articles are scanned and the LED of the corresponding container flashes. This eliminates the need for a time-consuming search for the corresponding container. The only technical requirement was the installation of access points in the warehouses and the writing of labels via a web service, triggered by WLAN scanners. HPC has developed the solution that the tags are triggered through the respective implementation of the existing SAP processes.