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WesTrac to streamline DC operations with Dematic's AutoStore

By Jessie Chiang
Wed 27 Jul 2022

WesTrac, the leading Caterpillar equipment provider to the construction, mining and agricultural industries, has announced plans to automate operations at its distribution center in Tomago, NSW – with the deployment of an AutoStore solution from Dematic.

AutoStore is an automated storage, goods-to-person (GTP) picking and fulfilment solution designed to maximise warehouse space and minimise manual labour. Compared to a typical manual warehouse operation, AutoStore streamlines the process significantly, creating a highly efficient picking system – with one picker working at the equivalent of four to five manual pickers.

WesTrac operations GM Danielle Bull says, like many businesses, the pandemic created unprecedented challenges for WesTrac. The company worked to maintain high service levels to customers across NSW and the ACT, despite global supply chain delays and disruptions.

"The high level of productivity and redundancy we anticipate from the AutoStore solution will ensure our orders are fulfilled and delivered on time, with optimised movements and operator interactions, and the flexibility for the system to match our business growth," says Bull.

AutoStore is a unique and scalable solution. The grid can be easily expanded with minimal interruption and progressively filled with bins as storage demand grows. Businesses only need to invest in enough capacity to cover the short-term, allowing them to save their money for later when they reach their growth targets, without overcapitalising if they don't.

Dematic business development manager Seth van Dijk says AutoStore is ideal for industries looking for an advanced, fully automated solution to maximise storage capacity and streamline warehouse picking operations.

"AutoStore delivers the latest in warehouse automation technology, while serving as one of the densest, small footprint storage systems on the market," he says.

"Providing a high level of productivity and redundancy, the AutoStore solution will ensure that WesTrac can fulfill and deliver orders, with the solution able to adapt for further growth in the future."

Storage space and commercial real estate footprints are key challenges for organisations like WesTrac. By leasing or buying an existing parcel of land, building new facilities, or using existing structures, an organisation's commercial footprint can be a substantial (and growing) cost of business.

With the highest storage density of any GTP solution in the market, AutoStore maximises existing spaces, limiting the need for costly commercial real estate expansion. AutoStore is also one of the most sustainable warehouse picking solutions available today. AutoStore robots use power regeneration technology to reduce energy consumption.

"The AutoStore solution – powered by Dematic – works intelligently to utilise space within the warehouse with its unrivalled density and streamlined picking and replenishment capabilities," says van Dijk.

"Built to cater for a variety of business demands, whether it be upscaling for future growth or gaining valuable insights into warehouse operations to deliver business-critical improvements, AutoStore is a solution designed for proactive planning, better productivity, and a self-sufficient warehouse, and we are excited to see WesTrac reap the benefits of this system upon the project's completion."

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