topVOX is a specialist in speech-based logistics applications (voice picking) and manufacturer of the VOXter® hardware system for speech recognition. With topSpeech-Lydia®, we have designed a sophisticated speech-controlled picking system which outperforms any common MDE or paper-based system by significantly increasing both efficiency and quality. topSpeech-Lydia focuses on a client-based speech recognition and the use of common hardware (Motorola, Honeywell, LXE and many more), thus achieving a considerable cost advantage in comparison to proprietary systems. Customer satisfaction is of the utmost importance for topVOX. Thus, we offer a complete scope of services from concept design, realization, provision of hardware and software up to installation, training and maintenance. Our long-standing experience and know-how makes topVOX your ideal and reliable partner for introduction of speech based picking solutions in your company.
Warehouse & Logistics News – What does your job involve day to day? Has your role changed since last year?
My job at topVOX naturally entails offering our customers the best possible solution for effective deployment of personnel in intralogistics. My role has changed in so far as we always need to adapt to new customer requirements.
W&LN – 2011: how was it for you and topVOX?
2011 was for sure not less challenging than 2010 or 2009. But as we help our customers to save costs in their warehouse and logistic processes it was a successful year in terms of new customer business.
Due to the stable revenue from our existing customers we are in the good position of making appropriate investments in our research, development and marketing division.
W&LN – What is your particular proposition for customers in the warehouse & logistics sector? Has that changed since last year?
topVOX solutions incorporate voice recognition into logistic processes to free the employees from needless work: hands-free from paper tickets or barcode devices, eyes-free from reading or orientation work. Over the years, the implementation of voice in the warehouse has proven to optimize the workflow and increase both productivity and accuracy – resulting in interesting cost reductions! Another aspect in this context: increased accuracy in picking lead to lower returns and therefore a significant reduction of credits.
W&LN – How has the Order Picking sector been performing in 2011? What do you see as the most important recent developments in the sector?
First off, the growth of the voice market is influenced by economic trends, and therefore we expect a corresponding development of our UK market presence. Furthermore, batch sizes in picking are currently getting smaller through the growing online trade. topSPEECH-Lydia offers a suitable solution for this with its multi-order pick.
W&LN – Have you moved into any new business areas during 2011?
The circle of our target customers has significantly expanded through the technical advancement of our voice suite. Starting from the first customers who used our system in intralogistics, we now get requests from industry and manufacturing. In 2011 we developed a new speech based solution for the maintenance and healthcare branch.
W&LN – Has your company grown in the last 12 months?
topVox has achieved a good position in the voice market through healthy growth.
W&LN – Have you been investing in improving your premises, taking on more staff, upgrading your website, enhancing your IT etc in 2011?
W&LN – How are your existing products and services doing?
Our customers benefit from the use of voice picking. topVOX opens the door for operations of all sizes, including small web-based retailers, to use voice technology to make picking processes more effective and productive. In more recent times we experienced a high demand for our speech based picking solution for SAP. Due to the fact that topSPEECH-Lydia for SAP is directly integrated into the recent kernel version of SAP, it is easy to implement on the customer’s site.
W&LN – Have you launched any new products or services in 2011? What are they, and how are they performing?
In 2011 we launched our latest Plug&Play solution. With Plug&Play we are meeting the often expressed customer wish for a speech based picking system that is easy to integrate without much cost and effort for the customer. What also pays off here is that the software and hardware for topSPEECH-Lydia are completely up to the market standards. What makes the Plug&Play package so interesting is that the customer can be productive with the voice application in a very short time.
Moreover, our new Bluetooth headset was accepted very well by our customers. Since wiring is no longer required between the headset and the PDA on which the speech based picking application is installed, the pickers can go about their tasks more ergonomically.
W&LN – What’s been your company’s single biggest achievement in business this year?
The biggest achievement for topVOX was the growth in international business. We gained new international customers who will implement our voice solution in their sites worldwide.
W&LN – What was your personal favourite business moment in 2011?
It is always a special moment when you launch a new product or open a new market. So to me the presentation of our new PlugPlay solution was just as great a moment as intensifying our business in the Asian/Pacific region.
W&LN – If your company had to go through 2011 again, what would you do differently?
2011 was such an enormous successful year that we don’t want to change anything.
W&LN – Do you operate in any other countries besides the UK? How are you getting on there? Have you gone into any new countries in 2011?
topVOX is a worldwide positioned company. We offer our voice suite and services internationally. topVOX is represented by at least two system integrators in all industrialized countries. In 2011 we actually put a focus on intensifying our business in China and Japan.
W&LN – Have you won any awards in 2011, or been accredited to any new industry standards during this time?
Our speech based solution has been recognized with awards several times before. Indeed, some of our customers have won awards for the optimization of their logistic processes due to voice picking.
In 2010, topVOX was on the US Food Logistcs FL 100 list of leading software and technology companies in the food logistics sector.
W&LN – Which industry sectors are your customers in? What applications do people use your products/services for?
Our customers in the UK come from the classic sectors that particularly benefit from the use of voice picking, i.e. commerce, industry and production. With topSPEECH-Lydia, we ensure that our customers’ employees do their jobs more efficiently and more accurately.
Moreover, as a result of our new powerful speech recognition solution, topSPEECH-Lydia is favored by customers in branches like maintenance and check by voice.
W&LN – Do you sell your products direct or through distributors? Has that strategy changed in the last year?
W&LN – How does your forward order book compare with a year ago? What about the waiting list for your (products) compare with a year ago?
Our sales and orders received have risen by 20 %. The waiting list for our products is nearly the same as we are flexible in extending the numbers of our team members.
W&LN – Which trade shows did you exhibit at in 2011? How were they?
In UK we exhibited at Logistics Link South, Food& Drinks, Logistics Link Live and Logistics Link North. Regarding the quality and quantity of new contacts, Logistics Link Live in Birmingham was the best trade show in 2011.
W&LN – As the Christmas period is traditionally the busiest time of year for the UK warehousing and logistics industry, what challenges has your company been facing?
Our customers usually face special challenges during the Christmas period, but due to the flexible voice solution they manage the special challenges during this period in a perfect way. In case the customers want to extend their team we offer them a rental VOXter. So they can extend their hardware at low cost.
W&LN – As a company, what are your new year’s resolutions for 2012?
In terms of new year’s resolutions for topVOX, we are looking forward to a stable and healthy growth of the company and a good and trustful customer relationship.
W&LN – What are your plans for 2012?
We want to establish our voice based solution in new braches and we will intensify our activities in the Asian/Pacific region. Moreover, we will start our new major software release including innovative features that will make work with topSpeech-Lydia even more pleasant.
W&LN – Where do you see your company in three years’ time?
As we focus on research and development we are confident in establishing our voice solution in new business areas. Developing a speech based picking application for the logistics sector enabled us to enlarge our existing technical know-how. As a result we now offer a robust voice solution that will be adopted by other branches too.
W&LN – And finally, what would you like Father Christmas to bring your company in 2012?!
Tel: 0771 306 8300