Last week, GreyOrange Inc. had the opportunity of exhibiting at ProMat, the largest expo for manufacturing and supply chain professionals in North and South America. The event marked the company’s second US exhibition (the first being CSCMP in 2017) since establishing its headquarters in Alpharetta, GA in 2018.
Technologies of all varieties were on full display. Whether they were standalone gadgets such as robotic arms (of which there were many), or full-fledged solutions, ProMat had it all. On the latter, GreyOrange was proudly exhibiting not one, not two, but three of its technologies, redefining the word ‘flexible’ and show goers stopping by booth S3275 had the chance to experience a fully automated warehouse solution. Butler and PickPal, two of the company’s Goods-to-Person systems, and Flexo, a modular sorter synergistically occupied 800 square feet to lift, retrieve, pick, and sort during a span of 4 days.
A prevalent theme throughout the event was that of efficiency and productivity. Industry players are in constant search of their own competitive advantage; one that can be manifested greatly through their supply chains and technology is continuously evolving as the ultimate enabler of such differentiation, so it makes sense for industry participants to expect to find their competitive edge at ProMat, a place where supply chain and technology come together. Just ask GreyOrange Co-Founder and CEO, Samay Kohli, who’s company epitomizes the impressive leap in adoption that Supply Chain Automation providers are currently experiencing. When asked to share (in one word) his thoughts on the future of supply chain automation, he said ‘flexibility’. “We can’t predict what the future of supply chain is, so let’s make sure we are flexible enough to adopt whatever comes down the road” said Samay in an interview with Randell Mauricio from WorkerBee.TV, in cooperation with MHI. This response captures the idea of competitive advantage at its core, for companies that are fully prepared for tomorrow’s uncertainties are automatically one step ahead of the competition.
Samay spoke at the CRO Summit (collocated with ProMat) on ‘The Shift to Flexible Supply Chain Automation.’ The talk addressed different ways for companies to position themselves in an era of unpredictable consumer behavior. Gone are the days of rigid automation if one is to remain nimble and prepared for tomorrow’s challenges. Also presenting at ProMat was Scott Sopher, Principal, Deloitte Consulting – Global Supply Chain Service, who during MHI’s unveiling of the 2019 industry report, explained that digital adoption is divided into 4 stages: The collection of data through digital connectivity, the increase in supply chain insights from automation, advanced analytics, and Artificial Intelligence. Additionally, hot button topics such as the Internet of Things and blockchain technology were discussed in multiple expert-led sessions with the latter receiving quite a bit of attention as a major enhancer of the digital supply chain workforce.
Indeed, ProMat attendants were exposed to the awesome, implication-laden reality that presently occupies the supply chain industry... where AI exercises a significant influence. From prescriptive analytics and the power of individual sensors to generate, collect, analyze and optimize its own systems to the connected supply chain and science-driven warehouse execution software platforms that can optimize their own decisions, ProMat 2019 set the bar. Yet technology need only evolve for next spring’s big event, Modex 2020, to be truly one for the ages... (until ProMat 2021)