What is a Non-Sort Distribution Center?


A non-sort distribution center is what is proposed for the buildings in Hudson, NH. We hear about robots retrieving items and transporting them to fulfill an on-line order. However, according to an essay by Mills Snell, “ONE DAY AT AMAZON: IN THE BELLY OF THE BEAUTIFUL BEAST”, only items that fit in an 18x24 inch tote are sortable.


Therefore, many items ordered on-line come from a non-sort distribution center. These non-sort facilities tend to contain large or awkward items for shipping. They do not easily go on conveyor belts for sorting or fit into the order totes.


Workers pick the items for packing and shipping. The items may be large and heavy, as well as just oddball items. They include bulky items such as patio furniture, grills, strollers, outdoor equipment, rugs, bulk cleaning supplies, paper goods, pet food, and outdoor sports equipment: kayaks, fishing gear, skis. The items may be large and heavy, as well as just oddball or cumbersome items. All sorts of items that you may buy online.


Because of the size and weight of some of these items in a non-sort facility, the facility relies on Powered Industrial Equipment, which are machines similar to fork-lifts. Does this raise any noise and pollution issues?


Since many items sent from a non-sort facility involve delivery scheduling. Some facilities are becoming more versatile and are offering both shipment and customer pickup.


Now, after having a better idea about what a non-sort distribution center is like, more questions arise:

  • Will toxic chemicals or highly flammable materials sit in the distribution center?

  • What is the expected inventory turnover rate?

  • Will a pickup facility exist in the future bringing an increase of customer traffic?


Resources:

ONE DAY AT AMAZON: IN THE BELLY OF THE BEAUTIFUL BEAST An essay by Mills Snell.

https://www.permanentequity.com/writings/one-day-at-amazon


Berkshire Grey 2020

https://go.berkshiregrey.com/ecommerce-fulfillment.html?utm_campaign=fulfillment&utm_medium=paidsearch&utm_source=google&gclid=Cj0KCQjwse-DBhC7ARIsAI8YcWKpcQvffs_ZItOpNFNgfuzGg8l1IIhWH4-6JcUa0avRI730OcNxu8IaAhnrEALw_wcB


Leadership in Global Supply Chain and Logistics Consulting

https://www.mwpvl.com/html/amazon_com.html#:~:text=Non%2Dsortable%20fulfillment%20centers%20generally,conveyor%20belt%20for%20automated%20sortation.


glassdoor.com

https://www.glassdoor.com/Reviews/Employee-Review-Amazon-RVW4954790.htm


okctalk.com

https://www.okctalk.com/showthread.php?t=45881


krem.com

https://www.krem.com/article/news/local/amazon-fullfilment-center-opening-spokane-valley-2021/293-03a1f66e-d709-4c63-b803-a7f388212866


The Inner Workings of Amazon Fulfillment Centers – Part 1, October 22, 2019 by Christoph Roser

https://www.allaboutlean.com/amazon-fulfillment-1




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