Sunday, November 25, 2012

Just Another Day at the Factory

Well, it's been 4 weeks in and 4 weeks to go here at Santa's workshop, er, uh, Amazon.  Some days I hate it.  Some days I don't mind it.  Never do I love it, but I do enjoy the paychecks.  And so I go.

A few folks have asked just what is it I do.  What's it like there?  Ever get any free stuff?  So, here's the answers - short and sweet. 

What I do is count.  Officially I work in ICQA (inventory control quality assurance).  Unofficially I
am in housekeeping. I go out to a section of the warehouse with a scanner, scan the bin, count the number of items in it, enter the number into the scanner, then move on. If the count is different from what the computer says it should be then another person comes behind me to see if I counted wrong or if something is missing (or something extra is in the bin that shouldn't be).

  As I take things out to count them I do the housekeeping by knocking dust off things, and it is a dusty place, and replacing things in the bin neater than I found it.  The pickers, those folks who run around with carts and a scanner that tells them what you ordered and throw it in a bin to send to wrapping/shipping, rush through the aisles grabbing things quickly from the bins so sometimes bins get messed up, things get knocked in the floor and put back in the wrong bin, etc.  So all night I count and clean, clean and count.  So that's what I do.

What's it like there?  It's hot, noisy, dusty, and busy.  One night I was working on the fourth level of one area which gave me a great view of the whole operation in my area.  Here's a picture I found on the internet.  Not even sure it's from an Amazon plant, but it looks very much like the real thing.  I wish I could have taken a photo but cameras and other electronics are not allowed to be brought into the plant.  And they are serious about it.  Every time you go out of the warehouse area, to lunch or on a break or to go home, you have to pass through security just like at the airport except you do keep your shoes on. 

  Anyway, my view from up above was kind of like this except there were quite a few more pickers running around.  As of Black Friday all departments put on the full force, days off are canceled, and if you're gonna call in sick you better be writing your will.  Also, what doesn't show in this photo is all the miles and miles of conveyors running around the plant.  Pickers run around with carts and on their carts are bright colored bins.  Once the items for that bin are all picked the bin is set on the conveyor.  This can be any any part of the warehouse.  The bin has a barcode on the front of it and somewhere along the line a laser reads the label and levers or bars push and pull it off to just the right spot until it tips over and falls down a shute and heads off to be wrapped and shipped.  Watching all this happen from my lofty spot reminded me of that kids game mousetrap where you lined up all the ladders and things just right so that when you drop the ball at the beginning it rolls around causing things to push, pull, and drop until the trap falls at the end.  I looked hard but never did see that boot that kicked in the cheese although                                  I fully expect it's there somewhere!

1 comment:

  1. Nice post, thanks to share this information.I have visited your great post.

    concrete pumping toowoomba