Italy - LDL (Logistica Distribuzione Lombarda) Case Study


LDL - Pavia based distribution center: logistics and distribution high added value services
LDL (Logistica Distribuzione Lombarda), a fully owned subsidiary of the Marazzina Group specializing for more than forty years in integrated logistics, manages the handling, stocking and transportation of finished food and non food products. Founded in 1997, LDL operates in the logistics sector as product distributor for large customers in a variety of sectors from detergents and paints, devices and machines, to toys, chocolate and food specialties. However, LDL specializes in the chemical sector, a result of the relationship with its most important customer which has enabled the company to become a leader in the professional channel detergent distribution sector (cafeterias, hospitals, large communities, industry).

Printer integrated voice solution
Increase operator security
Reduce errors

Inventory and retrieval in one move
Increased security
Error reduction

"KFI developed the interface quickly and with excellent results: the implementation was completed in less than two months. The Vocollect Voice® system is integrated with our IBM iSeries based accounting
system through middleware software developed specifically for us, which retrieves picking lists for individual operators in real time and on-demand"
Angela Marazzina,
Financial Controller; CFO - LDL

THE CHALLENGE: Bulky and difficult to handle items
LDL’s new warehouse started its operations in September 2006 within the industrial area of Pavia. Operators move around the large premises on carts and handle multiple references ranging from 1200 liter tanks to swimming pool accessories as small as a mobile phone. Warehouse operators are responsible for handling heavy items requiring a high degree of care (which may include dangerous chemical products) and that are therefore also difficult to place.

THE SOLUTION: Transfer increasingly sophisticated goods in the best way and briefest time possible
Always careful to closely monitor market trends and customer requirements, and at the same time having decided to renovate its Distribution Centre while transferring it to Pavia’s new industrial area, LDL chose to evaluate the introduction of voice solutions to manage goods retrieval, but without replacing their existing IT system. Thanks to the advice of KFI, the Group’s provider of choice, the Vocollect Voice® solution was identified as the best choice enabling to achieve the desired results and replace the existing RF system. KFI, a Vocollect certified partner, has provided 10 Talkman® T5 wearable computers, the latest to be released by Vocollect. Using voice recognition technology, data from the SGM (Sistema di Gestione del Magazzino – Warehouse Management System) is converted to voice instructions for warehouse operators; the voice responses provided by the latter are then digitalized in order to be processed by the IT system. Data is transmitted through a radio frequency network connecting the server with the wearable computer on the operator’s belt. Using headphones and a microphone the operator can therefore listen to the instructions and respond to the SGM. Following a specific request from LDL, KFI added wireless printers to the Vocollect Voice® solution, placing them directly on the carts used by the operators.

Currently, operators use a solution that enables them to perform picking operations in "hands-free" mode and directly print the labels to be applied, achieving considerable time savings and a dramatic reduction of labeling errors. Furthermore, the Vocollect Voice® integration with the printers also extends to the part regarding code control errors: SGM in fact informs when the paper finishes, if the
printer jams, etc. Vocollect Voice® is also used by the picking operators to warn the system of the location of damaged packages found, which are therefore unavailable, thus adding the advantage of inventorying and picking in just one operation!

THE RESULT: A voice solution integrated with printers to offer high value added services
Implemented by KFI, the Talkman® T5 has been chosen and valued particularly because it enables the operator to perform pickings in hands free mode. This fundamental feature allows the staff to perform their work in complete security. In particular, the handling of dangerous chemical products requires the greatest level of attention to avoid the risk of accidents that could involve both staff and other
stocked products; having to use only his voice helps the operator to remain more focused on the operations being performed. Compared to normal scanners, Vocollect’s Talkman® also allows the use of protection gloves more easily, indispensable when picking materials of this type. Also greatly appreciated was the small size of the terminal: its very lightweight and ergonomic shape make it an object that does not hinder the operator’s work, providing complete freedom of movement. The same operators have shown their appreciation for this new method of work and have accepted positively the ability of dialoguing
with the system.

"KFI should also receive credit for having developed the Vocollect labeling application – of fundamental importance for us – integrating it with our existing accounting system, avoiding the need to introduce
changes to customary daily operations"
Angela Marazzina,
Financial Controller; CFO - LDL


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