DHL deploys AI robot to sort parcels


The DHLBot has been installed in Singapore and South Korea to counteract increased shipping volumes around Asia Pacific.

The AI-powered robotic arm can sort over 1,000 small parcels per hour, complementing manual sortation of small parcels. The upgrade will allow hubs and gateways to handle greater volumes, particularly during peak season, increasing overall operational efficiency by at least 40 percent.

Ken Lee, CEO, DHL Express Asia Pacific, says parcels take a lot of time, effort and precision to ensure that they get to their addressees without a hitch.

“These innovations, however minor they seem, will really boost our employees’ and operations’ productivity and efficiency,” he says. “The DHLBots are a demonstration of our innovative spirit as we continuously seek solutions to automate repetitive tasks and correspondingly, position us at the forefront of next-generation express logistics.”

DHL Express partnered with Dorabot, an AI-powered robotic solution provider after a successful pilot that saw a significant boost in parcel sortation productivity and service quality.

In 2020, DHL Express recorded a 17.3 percent year-on-year increase in shipment volume during the peak months of November and December. Capable of sorting over 1,000 small parcels per hour with 99 percent accuracy, the DHLBot reduces the probability of mis-sorting and thereby, removes the need for secondary sorting.

Sean Wall, Executive Vice President, Network Operations & Aviation, DHL Express Asia Pacific says the innovation will help maintain high customer satisfaction levels.

This smart sortation robot enables us to manage the increasing growth of shipment and parcel volume driven by the rise of cross-border e-commerce,” he says. “It also translates to a safer work environment for our employees, as it lifts their efficiency during peak season when labor demand is high.”

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