Konica Minolta automates logistics operations with RPA — supports the sudden work of the Corona Virus

Konica Minolta Japan has automated logistics operations caused by the new coronavirus with rpa-robotic process automation tools. After the operation of the software robot, the processing time that took 12 hours a day by hand was reduced by 85%. This will reduce the number of hours in the year.

This automated business process could be automated in conjunction with subsequent processes, so it is still being used. In the development of software robots, in order to start operation as soon as possible and ensure that delivery at the end of the fiscal year is not delayed, we will put human work into a part of the process and operate flexibly in stead of incorporating all the functional requirements.

In February 2020, due to the spread of the new coronavirus infection, the company began to delay delivery of some of its products from China, while orders continued to enter, resulting in the need to proceed with work while changing the logistics process linked to the system. The company’s logistics department continued its order shipping operations by prioritizing staff checking the details of orders and product inventory, and shipped 400 orders a day in this way.

However, this process took about five to eight times the normal hand by hand, and it became a situation which had to be covered by overtime work. Orders continued during this time, and there were concerns that delivery would be delayed towards the end of March.

Therefore, the company began considering performing some logistics work with RPA with the aim of quickly breaking through this sudden situation, minimizing the impact on delivery by the end of March, and smoothing the flow of information.

The company had already used Automation Anywhere Enterprise, so the project was launched mainly by the digital workforce office that was the driving force. In early March, the project participants held a meeting between the two companies to confirm the challenges and build a new business process, and then started developing software robots. It was possible to complete it in about 10 days after the operation test.

In the software robot developed, a list was first extracted from the order system, a list was created, checked against the inventory adjustment list with inventory status, and the process of sending the checked production list by email to the person in charge of the logistics department was automated.