University of Twente Student Theses


Essay #67050

Zoeteweij, Ruben (2015) Item availability restricted.

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Abstract:Over the last years Jumbo Supermarkten B.V. (Jumbo) has grown substantially. Because of this rapid growth, and in particular due to the acquisition of supermarket chain C1000, the product mix has altered and the number of orders which has to be processed in warehouses has exploded. At a regional distribution centre (RDC) of Jumbo, these trends have result in an enormous pressure on the warehouse facilities. As a result, at busy times when a large amount of orders need to be picked, and pick- and bulk storage locations need to be restocked, congestion in the pick aisles starts to play a role. Consequently, we have developed the following goal for this master thesis research: “Find a solution, which can be used at the warehouse, for reducing the amount of congestion in the pick aisles during peak hours” After having formulated the research questions, we started this project by executing a literature study concerning the design of order picking systems. This study helped us focussing on the relevant aspects of order picking in general and congestion in warehouses in particular. After that, we performed a bottleneck analysis regarding congestion in the pick aisles during the order picking process. We found out that congestion is caused by blocking of pick- and reach trucks and identified three blocking types. Furthermore we examined the root causes of these blockages that result in congestion. The bottleneck analysis gave us knowledge regarding the causes of congestion in the pick aisles and suggested to propose a new storage strategy as a solution. Consequently, we developed a new storage strategy consisting of two aspects: (1) Determination of the pick location volume per SKU, e.g. the number of pallet locations from which an SKU can be picked and (2) the allocation of SKUs to pick locations or slots. Regarding the pick location volume per SKU we developed two algorithms (Algorithm 1 and Algorithm 2). Considering the allocation of SKUs to pick locations we developed two slotting algorithms (Algorithm 3 and Algorithm 4). After having developed a solution, the next step in our research was concerned with evaluating the performance of our proposed storage strategy with respect to the current situation. To do this, we developed a simulation model representing picking zone KW3 during the order picking process in several morning-shifts. Our main performance criteria is the average waiting time per shift due to blockages for both the pick- and reach trucks. Based on the results of our simulation study we conclude that our proposed storage strategy performs better than the current situation and results in significant savings in waiting time. We therefore recommend to implement our solution. However, before implementation we recommend to first perform a study regarding congestion and possible improvements in the other zones of the warehouse.
Item Type:Essay (Master)
Jumbo Supermarkten B.V., Woerden, The Netherlands
Faculty:BMS: Behavioural, Management and Social Sciences
Subject:85 business administration, organizational science
Programme:Industrial Engineering and Management MSc (60029)
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