Projects / Retail / Distribution / Berner relies on DPS
Berner relies on DPS
The new logistics center of Albert Berner Deutschland GmbH in Künzelsau, Germany, enabled a significant expansion of the warehousing and picking capacities in the central warehouse of the German distribution company of the Berner Group. The DPS tote picking system optimizes logistics processes and contributes to a sustainable increase in performance in a highly competitive market environment.
Customer: Albert Berner Deutschland GmbH
The Berner Group is one of Europe’s leading direct sellers, offering an all-around service in the small components business to professionals in the building construction and automotive sectors, as well as other industries. An efficient international supply chain plays a crucial role in the sustainable success of the company. By expanding the warehousing and picking capacities at the Künzelsau site, Berner laid the foundations for highly efficient logistics.
Industry sector
Retail / Distribution
25,000 SKUs (small parts)
Special features of the project
The changing movement rates of the items depending on the order structure are automatically taken into account by the DPS through their variable placement in static or dynamic tote channels - there are 2,200 of these channels at Berner. Since these allow access to the 6,500 different products, the walking distances of the order pickers are significantly shortened. What is more, this principle allows extremely compact storage. Picking takes place on two networked levels at a total of 20 picking stations, which are supplied with stock by six stacker cranes. Each aisle in the three-aisle DPS tote warehouse is equipped with two stacker cranes, which not only cover outbound and restocking functions, but also ensure the continuous replenishment of the totes in the picking channels of the DPS. The storage capacity has also been extended: Before the expansion, Berner had 21,500 pallet storage locations and 57,000 tote storage locations available - now the company can use an additional 2,300 pallet locations. In addition, the capacity of the tote warehouse has almost doubled with an extra 55,000 storage locations.
Berner has invested around eleven million euros in upgrading its logistics processes. Some 8.5 million euros of this amount were allocated to WITRON’s scope of services. Almost all of the 25,000 Berner products are stored in the logistics centerin Künzelsau, around 1,000 suppliers are linked to the logistics system. All the A items and some of the B items, i. e. roughly 6,500 different products in total, are picked from the DPS directly into shipping cartons and replenishment is completely automated. This solution has enabled an 80% increase in throughput compared to the previous solution in the Berner logistics center, the error rate related to all deliveries has dropped to a rate of 0.04 percent, and shift operation has been reduced from 1.5 shifts previously to 1 shift a day currently. As a result, logistics costs also decreased significantly. Moreover, the picking output at Berner has increased to around 3,000 orderlines per hour. At the DPS picking stations, employees can pick from totes and pallet staging areas directly into the shipping cartons. This gives Berner the flexibility needed to exploit the advantages of the DPS system even in the event of major changes within the product range, which currently lists 25,000 items.
Customer opinion
Berner promises its customers that it will deliver within 24 hours from the time the order is received in the SAP system. The last order time does not play such a major role in this context because the majority of orders arrive over the course of the day. By extending the deadline from 1 pm to 3 pm, all customer requests can be met by the next working day - a key selling point in a highly competitive market environment. What used to be a rush order is now a standard order for us. Due to the high dynamics of the DPS system, we can easily meet the delivery requirements of our customers.