Story originally appeared in Inbound Logistics‘ May 2020 issue (published May 19, 2020). Excerpts from the story below. To see the full story visit

Developers at Blue Yonder hope to build a similar capability into the company’s own WMS. The current working name for this feature is “task orchestration,” says Matthew Butler, director of industry strategy at Blue Yonder. “It allows us to use cloud computing power to understand the relationships between warehouse tasks, whether they’re performed by a robot or by humans.”

Analyzing all the work the warehouse needs to accomplish, the resources available, and deadlines for filling various orders on time and in full, the technology would assign tasks to resources as effectively as possible.

Blue Yonder’s system would also pull in data from robots as they went about their work on the warehouse floor. “That way, we can more holistically orchestrate, knowing their availability and the inventory that they have, which orders should be allocated to one zone or another, one robotics provider or another, with the objective of accuracy and speed,” Butler says.