Case Study – TSC Chooses Megamat RS Vertical Carousels for Jewelry Distribution
Summary of Solution: Three Megamat RS Vertical Carousels with inventory management software enable batch picking for jewelry distribution – using 54% less labor and increasing productivity by 600%.
Headquartered in Mississauga, ON, TSC is a leading multi-channel retailer, offering a vast assortment of exclusive products and top brand names to customers throughout Canada. With roots as a televised shop-from-home service reaching into over 7 million Canadian households, TSC expanded into eCommerce, growing into one of Canada’s most innovative retailers. They provide customers shopping convenience with exceptional selections in Health & Beauty, Jewelry, Home/Lifestyle, Fashion/Accessories, and Electronics.
Over 15,000 quality products are available to customers 24-7 with the click of a button or a quick phone call. Managing and distributing 15,000 rotating SKUs can be quite the challenge, but TSC is meeting customer delivery expectations at every turn.
TSC is supported by a 300,000 square foot warehouse equipped with the latest material handling technology, shipping roughly 10,000 orders a day. Accounting for 20% of the business, jewelry was prime for an operation makeover.
Three, 29 foot Kardex Remstar Megamat RS Vertical Carousels combined with Power Pick Global (PPG) inventory management software are used to manage the jewelry and coin inventory. “Because of the small size and high value, jewelry was perfect for carousel technology,” said Sue McGibbon, Jewelry Manager.
Previously, jewelry was stored in open shelving within a cage area managed by a security officer. With growth year after year, jewelry was quickly running out of space and struggling to keep up with eCommerce customer demand. With the transition to automated vertical carousels, over 8,000 jewelry and coin SKUs are now managed in 75% less floor space.
Order Fulfillment Flexibility
TSC has a flexible system driven by customer demand. “Our order volume is highly variable, depending on the shows and promotions some days have 600 orders and some days 100 orders. That was a big labor challenge for us in the past, especially at the peak when lines required to pick per day are as high as 2,000 lines per day with one shift,” said McGibbon, “but with the carousels we’re able to manage the fluctuation easily.”
“Our eCommerce order volume is highly variable, peak times require 2,000 lines per day with one shift,” said McGibbon, “but with the carousels we’re able to manage the fluctuation easily.”
With the implementation of the carousels and moving returns handling to another department, jewelry distribution requires 10 people; down from 22 previously required to receive, pick, pack, ship and process returns.
Further, throughput has increased from a previous average of 40 lines per hour per person to an average of 165 lines per hour per person, now a standard facility KPI. At peak times the system handles 240 lines per hour per person. Meaning jewelry distribution now requires 54% less total labor and has increased productivity by 600%.
As a leading employer in the area, TSC employs a dedicated and seasoned workforce, most employees in the jewelry area have been there for over 20 years. “The three carousels reduce the work area of the operator to 32 feet, and with ergonomic delivery there is no wear and tear on the body,” said McGibbon, “There is definitely an element of employee satisfaction that comes with the carousels.”