Helly Hansen, a Norwegian manufacturer and retailer of clothing and sports equipment, has grown rapidly in recent years. The company said it has nearly doubled every five years. This growth forced the company to constantly change warehouses. It also faces hectic peak seasons, when many of its workers need to work overtime to keep up with customer orders.
Helly Hansen turned to integration firm Element Logic to find an automation solution that could help it maximize its warehouse space and increase efficiency. Element Logic is a distributor of AutoStore, a leading developer of automated storage and retrieval systems (ASRS).
AutoStore’s ASRS is made up of an aluminum framework grid that holds binds in place and acts as a railway for the system’s robots. The robots zip across the framework to dig, collect, and deliver bins to workstations, where workers can individually pick items and pack them into orders. The system is modular, so customers can add to the grid anytime they want if they need to expand.
One of the biggest benefits Helly Hansen got from the system is its ability to maximize space. AutoStore said its system can provide companies with up to four times the storage capacity in the same footprint as manual storage. This helps Helly Hansen know that they can get comfortable in their current facilities.
Helly Hansen deployed AutoStore’s system in its Pacific Northwest warehouse with the help of Element Logic. The company outfitted the distribution center with 50,000 bins, 36 robots, and 10 carousel ports to maximize the warehouse processes.
“The substantial reduction in product touches has enabled us to operate in a significantly leaner and more efficient manner,” Andrew Aldworth, quality compliance manager at Helly Hansen, said.
Since implementing the system, Helly Hansen said its space concerns are gone and it has increased productivity. During peak season, workers didn’t have to work overtime, according to the company, and orders were processed faster than in previous years. Before, it could take the team two or three days to complete an order. This year, the team could complete these orders in half a day.
Watch a video about the deployment below: