Press Release

Exoskeletons tested at several Rhenus sites in France

For several months now, Rhenus has been testing exoskeletons of different types at some of its logistics sites in France. Better working conditions for operators, more flexibility in recruitment and improved social distancing are the main reasons that have accelerated the deployment of this equipment.

The health crisis forced the Rhenus Group to accelerate the transformation of its working methods. Using exoskeletons to facilitate loading, unloading or moving parcels was already under active consideration in the company. With the social distancing measures imposed by the COVID-19 crisis, it became impossible to ask two operators to pick up heavy packages to unload a sea container. The use of an exoskeleton proved to be a simple and effective solution to this concrete problem.

Beyond this aspect, exoskeletons offer many other advantages to their users and to logistics organisations. They reduce the drudgery of work and allow female staff, or staff without specific physical aptitude, to occupy positions that were previously inaccessible to them. Employers can thus diversify the sources of recruitment for these types of positions, which opens up new perspectives in a sector under stress.

"Some technologies provide both better operational performance and improved working conditions for our staff. This is what guides our choices to go even further in the use of new technologies in the warehouse. We work in partnership with suppliers of robots, picking automation systems, and IoT systems whenever their solutions can improve our agility for the benefit of our customers, both in France and in all the other countries where Rhenus operates," says Laurent Schuster, CEO Rhenus Logistics France.

About Rhenus

The Rhenus Group is a leading logistics service provider with global business operations and annual turnover of EUR 5.5 billion. Rhenus has business sites at 750 locations worldwide and employs 33,000 people. The Rhenus Group provides solutions for a wide variety of different sectors along the complete supply chain; they include multimodal transport operations, warehousing, customs clearance as well as innovative value-added services.

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