Photos: A day in the life of an Amazon.co.uk order

Photos: A day in the life of an Amazon.co.uk order

Summary: You hit 'buy now' - and then what happens?

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TOPICS: Networking
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  • 10:45am Here's my book on the shelf. Looks like they've got a few copies left. There are miles and miles of shelf space inside the colossal hanger which at the moment is at its emptiest. Huge empty spaces show where the last Harry Potter book had been until its release. Soon the company will start to fill the shelves in the build-up to Christmas.

    'Pickers' work in set neighbourhoods of the warehouse, selecting items off the shelves which are part of live orders. They load up bright orange crates which are then taken off to be sorted and separated out into individual orders. If there are currently 12 live orders for The Da Vinci Code then all 12 will go into the same crate to be sorted further on down the line.

  • 10:50am The orange crates travel on conveyor belts over the heads of the sorters and packers below. As crates arrive they are unpacked and at this stage individual orders are made up and placed in smaller green crates with the other items that make up that order.

  • 10:55am Packers then take the green crates and package the contents ready for despatch, putting CDs, DVDs, books and everything else from electrical goods to kitchenware into the distinctive Amazon cardboard packaging.

    At this stage the orders are identified by bar codes generated when the order is processed. The next stage will see those bar codes matched against delivery addresses on the database in order for labels to be printed up.

Topic: Networking

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