Print services’ role in warehouse boom

The UK is building new warehouses at a record-breaking pace and scale. Almost 37 million sq ft of warehouse space is due to be built in 2021, up from 23 million sq ft last year and 21 million in 2019, according to property consultancy Knight Frank.

The demand for these ‘mega-sheds’ is being driven by the boom in online retail and last mile delivery, the final stage where the product is picked, packed, and labelled before being delivered to the customer’s door. The larger the sheds get; the more sophisticated businesses’ systems need to be for managing orders and keeping stock under control.

Ged Cairns, Head of Auto ID Business Unit, Brother UK explains why businesses need to expand their tech infrastructure for inventory management and why this represents an opportunity for resellers to help ease challenges for logistics firms and retailers.

Integrated solutions

Research from technology market consultancy VDC forecasts revenue from Auto-ID solutions, such as barcode label printers and mobile scanners, are to increase by 14 per cent this year, as firms strive to unlock efficiencies when tracking stock and labelling products in the warehouse.

The size and scale of these sheds mean that they increasingly require more integrated solutions that boost speed and accuracy, and, in turn, productivity, as they increase the volume of products passing processed through their warehouse.

This means that resellers have an opportunity to consult with customers on the challenge and provide the essential products, solutions, and services, easing their customers’ growing pains as they expand into these larger spaces.

Retailers need rugged, fully mobile labelling solutions with wireless connectivity to print on demand, such as our RJ series. This helps workers to quickly identify and label products without having to return to larger printers at the end of the aisle or in a separate room.

As fulfilment operators and their spaces expand, it’s also crucial that they’re able to procure devices that are compatible with multiple command languages, so that businesses can add to their existing infrastructure rather than embarking on a complete, and potentially costly, overhaul.

Managed label service

Taking huge warehouse space can be a huge investment for occupying retail, logistics and fulfilment companies, while also presenting a challenge to procure the right products at scale.

To help resellers better support their logistics customers, Brother UK has launched managed label services (MLS), a new hardware-as-a-service platform for businesses to procure Brother label printers, third party hardware, software, services and supplies via more cost-effective monthly plans.

It’s helping firms to shift purchases from capital expenditure to operational expenditure, which is especially useful for those who may be feeling the pinch from the current inflationary pressures putting a squeeze on budgets. Also, with the inclusion of a suitable service pack to provide after-sales technical support firms avoid the downtime that dents productivity and, ultimately, the bottom line.

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