XPO Logistics Pilots Wearable Technology for E-Commerce Logistics

ProGlove scanning solution improved speed by 10% and reduced errors by 75% during inventory picking

XPO Logistics, Inc. (NYSE: XPO), a leading global provider of transportation and logistics solutions, today announced a successful pilot of a wearable barcode scanner designed by technology partner ProGlove, Inc. The first pilot of the ProGlove MARK 2 was conducted over seven weeks at an XPO distribution center in Everett, Washington, using smart-glass headsets worn by employees during inventory picking; a second pilot will test the same scanner with hand-held tablets.

The intelligent scanner is worn on the back of the hand and can be paired with an augmented reality headset or other smart device, which displays real-time information about storage locations, product identifiers and inventory levels. The technology integrates with XPO’s warehouse management system and digital tools used in the order preparation process.

XPO expects that the benefits documented by the pilot should produce similar results across the company’s broad network of logistics sites. Notable findings include:

  • Six seconds saved per pick, representing an efficiency gain of approximately 10%;
  • 75% reduction in errors per million units picked;
  • Valuable data assimilated by the company’s XPO Smart™ labor productivity tools; and
  • Employee health and safety supported by the scanner’s ergonomic design, as well as the ability to set social distancing alerts.

Ashfaque Chowdhury, president, supply chain – Americas and Asia Pacific, XPO Logistics, said, “Wearable technologies make it easier to work with precision in the fast-paced logistics environment. It’s not unusual for each of our e-commerce fulfillment centers to manage thousands of different product SKUs during peak seasonality. With ProGlove, we can realize sustainable gains in productivity, while delivering a better experience for our employees.”

“We’re excited to be working with XPO Logistics on the expansion of their wearable technology initiatives,” said Andreas Koenig, chief executive officer of ProGlove. “By seamlessly integrating with XPO’s warehouse management system and prioritizing the ergonomic needs of their workers, we can enhance efficiency as the sites accommodate e-commerce growth.” 

XPO is an industry leader in e-commerce order fulfillment – a fast-growing area of logistics that accelerated when consumers shifted to online buying during COVID-19. In July, XPO released an independent research study that found 94% of US respondents expect to buy the same or more goods online going forward, compared with prior shopping habits.