Pick-to-Light Picking zones

Pick-to-Light System with multiple picking zones

What is a Pick-to-Light picking zone?

How do I plan a picking zone?

Are several employees allowed to work in one picking zone?

How flexible is the system?

... and much more.

In the article we will explain you the function and structure of a picking zone equipped with a Pick-to-Light system. We also show you how several pickers can work simultaneously in such a picking zone.

What is Pick-to-Light Picking Zone?

A Pick-to-Light picking zone defines a certain number of storage locations that are controlled simultaneously during picking. One or more pickers work in a picking zone.

How do I plan a picking zone?

The size of the picking zone depends on many factors, so only a thorough analysis can give the correct answer. The most important thing is that the employees keep a very good orientation. Access to the goods should be fast and targeted. At the same time, the quality of picking must be as high as possible.

The system must provide optimal support for the employee!

On a semi-automatic picking system with conveyor technology, Pick-to-Light and flow racks, the picking zones are approx. 6-8 m long. Here, the conveyor system also serves as a buffer, and the correct distribution of the goods in the zone is achieved by the A/B/C analysis. It is very important that the employee keeps all Pick-to-Light compartment displays well in view and has the shortest possible walking distances.

In completely manual systems with picking carts, the size of the picking zone varies greatly. Sometimes the zones are very long and are even operated simultaneously by several employees. You will find out how this works in a moment ...

Fast navigation

A single picking zone can also have several hundred displays. Sometimes the picker also has to stand with his back to the Pick-to-Light (B or C items). To keep track of the storage compartments, special displays are used for quick navigation. At a glance, the picker can see where the active storage compartments are approximately positioned (left-bottom, right-top, middle or back). Thus, a segment of the navigation display is assigned to each storage compartment. After each acknowledgement, the controller automatically updates the navigation display.

In addition to the graphic display of active orders, the navigation display shows the number of open picks. Practice shows that the use of navigation makes work much more relaxed and faster for the picker. This results in an overall performance increase of about 5-7%. The low cost of the function justifies the investment.

Are several employees allowed to work in one picking zone?

Yes! The answer is clear, insofar as the LUCA-Server is used. With our system several employees can work in one picking zone. We have multicolored LED's available at the displays. Each employee and his order is assigned a separate color. The problem of simultaneous access to the compartments is complex, but we have solved it very well. The LUCA-Server has developed a special procedure for synchronization of outputs and accesses to the same trays.

This procedure enables correct coordination between individual processes for multiple employees and orders. Each employee works with his own data. However, each process of the picking zone does not send the telegrams directly to Pick-to-Light, but to a synchronization module. The module is then responsible for the correct coordination of accesses to the common storage bins.

Do you want to know how exactly this works? Contact us ...

How flexible is a picking zone?

The function is not quite simple, but possible. The challenge not only affects Pick-to-Light itself, but also the warehouse management system (WMS). Whether the dynamic division of picking zones is really practicable, we cannot yet answer with a clear "yes". We always investigate these requirements very thoroughly and precisely before such systems are created. We have already developed many variants of the solution, but almost every solution was very customized. We will present some examples of them in our further blog articles soon.


The division of a Pick-to-Light system into several picking zones is mandatory. This allows several pickers to process different orders at the same time. The division and the size must always be determined individually. In the LUCA system, even several employees can pick simultaneously and efficiently.

Many years of experience in paperless order picking