Technical investments for all businesses are fundamental regardless of individual practice. Applying a 3D camera to those practices broadly speaking, enhances time and cost efficiencies, as well as reducing human error, and maintaining real time data. But why does using a 3D imaging device enable this?
3D Mobile Box Measurement Applied to Warehousing
Exponential growth of E-commerce has increased demand to meet high customer expectations. Items must be in stock and often delivered the next day. This trend has accelerated during the pandemic due to customers ordering all produce online rather than using shops. The pressure on the supply chain is overwhelming, therefore individual processes urgently require development.
Optimising warehouse storage space begins with knowing the exact dimensions of each box, container, parcel, and pack type entering the facility. Inaccurate or incomplete dimensioning results in poor staging, load planning, slotting, and re-racking all of which contribute to inefficient space usage. With xDIM™, a one-of-a-kind mobile volume dimensioning system, workers capture accurate and reliable measurements with point and click functionality of a tablet. Enhancing stackability and enabling more efficient slotting ensures precious storage space is used as effectively as possible.
Many warehouses previously opted for stationary or large cart 3D metrology equipment. However, these devices are bulky and cumbersome and require the movement of a box or parcel to the measuring station – a timely endeavour. Often, these expensive systems sit in a corner unused, collecting dust and taking up floor space—an obvious ROI miss. Modernizing processes with the mobility of xDIM enables workers to measure a box from anywhere—saving time and ultimately, money.
The cloud-based xDIM software seamlessly integrates with existing product information management systems (PIMS), warehouse management systems (WMS), enterprise resource planning software (ERP), and other resource management platforms to efficiently store and manage data. Plus, xDIM is Certified by NTEP to applicable requirements of NIST Handbook 44, meaning it can be legally used for establishing the cost for services or hire on the basis of a measurement.
Whether you ship orders directly from a distribution centre or use a third-party logistics partner, you will likely encounter dimensional weight (commonly referred to as DIM weight), a major factor in determining shipping costs.
3D Mobile Box Measurement | Item Size Matters
Until recently, most major carriers only used weight and shipping distance to calculate costs, but now the size of an item is factored in as well. Shipping lightweight items in giant boxes take away valuable storage space in transit. DIM weight pricing takes the package’s size into account, assessing the shipper for the volume it occupies instead of just its weight.
3D Mobile Box Measurement | What is DIM Weight and How is it Calculated?
DIM weight is calculated by multiplying a package’s length, width, and height, and then dividing it by a carrier’s dimensional factor. Parcel carriers determine the billable shipping charges by comparing DIM weight to the actual weight; the greater of the two determines the shipping costs.
As this form of measurement could impact a package’s shipping costs, it is critical that your measurement system be as accurate as possible. Relying on manual measurements and calculation of DIM weight could lead to unnecessary additional shipping costs. Carriers have even started to impose audit fees if shippers misstate package dimensions.
For example, let’s say a package that weighs 28 pounds has a DIM weight of 30 pounds. Due to human error when measuring the package, the DIM weight is recorded as 32 pounds. Remember that the billed weight is the higher of the two, so the carrier will charge based off the inaccurate, 32 pound weight, adding unnecessary costs to the shipment.
These inaccurate dimensions are particularly costly when choosing to ship as a parcel or freight. Carriers like FedEx and UPS have specific weight and size limits to determine if freight shipping is needed.
Several parcel carriers currently require packages with a combined length and girth over 165 inches to be shipped as freight. Let’s say a 40x40x24 package is manually measured and the height recorded is 22-inches, resulting in a combined length and girth of 164 inches. As this is below the 165 inch freight threshold, the package is shipped as a parcel. However, when the carrier measures the package and discovers the height is 24 inches, increasing the combined length and girth to 168 inches, they will add a significant surcharge for the inaccuracy. Had the initial measurement been accurate and the package shipped as freight, the cost of shipping freight is not nearly as significant as the surcharge from shipping as a parcel.