Analysis of the Effects of Automation of Warehouse Processes – Building the Concept of Simulation Tests
Purpose: The purpose of this article is to develop a research concept for business process simulation models that take into account all possible automation scenarios activated depending on the tested configuration of their implementation. Design/Methodology/Approach: As part of the research, warehouse processes were identified in one of the key Polish e-commerce companies. These processes were modeled in the next step using BPMN notation and simulated taking into account all model parameters. Thanks to the calibration of the models, it was possible to confirm their correctness. In the next step, the models were modified in order to implement automatic solutions, correct parameters. Findings: The developed scenario models allow for a comparative analysis of automation scenarios by activating or deactivating individual variants of the model. The simulation results obtained for various scenario models which enabled to distinguish the potential of using the simulation, i.e. a set of process parameters that should be subject to comparative analysis in subsequent stages of the research so that it was possible to verify the results of the implemented automatic solutions. Practical Implications: The changes taking place in modern logistics and warehouse processes are mainly caused by the increase in the requirements of final recipients in terms of the quality of services provided and the time of their implementation. The growing importance of online sales and the very intensively developing COVID-19 pandemic have made this distribution channel one of the key forms of obtaining and delivering products to end recipients. One of the essential elements of development is shortening process cycles, elimination of human errors or effective use of the resources involved through automation. Originality/Value: As a result of the analyzes, a research concept that allows the use of multi-scenario simulation models taking into account automatic solutions in warehouse processes, implemented in the e-commerce industry, was developed. This model will be used in further research on the results of automation implementation.