Pick & Pack
Foxtrot · Web · iOS
Foxtrot orders were being delivered with the wrong items or missing items. Additionally, They were often delivered well past the promised delivery time.
My product manager and I were tasked with architecting a system that would reduce fulfillment errors and increase efficiency.
Product Design Lead
Understanding the Problem
Up until this point, most of my time at Foxtrot had been spent working on customer facing projects. I was unfamiliar with the tools that store teams were using to power our e-commerce business. I was excited for the opportunity to immerse myself in the operations of our business.
I visited six Foxtrot locations and asked the store manager for each to walk me through the process of how their team picked and packed items for an online order. I also spoke with countless store team members about their experiences and how we could improve the process.
Though each store had its own unique way of fulfilling online orders, the core workflow they followed was roughly the same. My goal was to document that core workflow and pinpoint issues that were preventing the team from working more efficiently.
Identifying Key Issues
The store team had to transfer orders from our internal tool (Merchant) to our point of sale system (Clover) by recreating them. They had to manually search the point of sale for each item in the order to do this.
The order was displayed to the team on a desktop computer. It’s not very easy to carry a desktop computer around the store with you as you pick the items in the order. They had no tools that enabled them to pick orders while on the move.
Between transferring the order to the POS and manually selecting items from the shelves, there was a lot of room for store team members to incorrectly pick or forget items. With no QA system in place to catch any mistakes, orders often went out with incorrect items.
Delivery Fulfillment Store in Chicago
Identifying the Opportunities
The process of pickers recreating orders in the point of sale was an obvious issue we knew we could solve by fully integrating our system with the Clover system. This would be a backend heavy initiative but would greatly reduce the amount of time required to fulfill orders if we could send the information directly to Clover.
The second opportunity we identified was providing better tools to pickers. One desktop computer simply wasn't enough to facilitate the process of fulfilling orders efficiently. We wanted to give the store team a tool that was easy to carry around and helped them accurately pick items.
Building "Pick & Pack"
Our goal was to build a mobile app that allowed store team members to manage all online orders quickly from the palm of their hand. The app would be fully integrated with Clover, eliminating several redundancies in the fulfillment process. It would also allow pickers to scan items as they picked orders to ensure order and inventory accuracy.
I designed and documented the Pick & Pack app over the next two months, working closely with my product manager and stakeholders to make sure we were building the best possible product. My main challenge during this time was establishing a workflow for actually picking items. We ended up creating a process that allowed store team members to not only pick items, but replace items and add items to orders as well.
Claiming an Order
Pickers could claim an order to start fulfilling by selecting it from a list or just automatically selecting the next order in the queue.
Scanning an Item
Pickers can scan items and be alerted if they’ve scanned the wrong one. If there are multiples of an item, they are asked to confirm the quantity they actually picked.
Inventory discrepancies and other issues happen often. Pickers can add, remove, and replace items as well as mark items as out of stock or force pick them without scanning a barcode.
Submitting an Order
When all the items in an order are accounted for, pickers can submit the order as packed and automatically print a ticket with the necessary notations.
The Pick & Pack app is in use at every Foxtrot location today. It’s implementation resulted in an improvement in several key metrics.
Minute decrease in avg. pack time
Increase in perfect order rate
The app now has a dedicated product team and has expanded to include tools to help store teams perform functions outside of order fulfillment.