Fast-pick areas are commonly used in order picking warehouses to improve labor efficiency by concentrating picking activities within a compact area, thus minimizing the distance traveled by the pickers. One problem that must be solved when a fast-pick area is to be implemented is the so-called assignment-allocation problem. This deals with deciding which products should be assigned to the fast-pick area, and how much space should be allocated to these products. This research was motivated by the picking operation of a cosmetics distribution center where several fast-pick areas are in place. A mixed integer linear programming formulation is proposed for solving the variant of the assignment-allocation problem found in this company. Our computational experiments show that the proposed model is efficient for solving small yet realistic instances of the problem.
Progress in Material Handling Research
Velez-Gallego, Mario C. and Smith, Alice E., "Optimization of a Fast-Pick Area in a Cosmetics Distribution Center" (2018). 15th IMHRC Proceedings (Savannah, Georgia. USA – 2018). 28.