Optimizing warehouse storage space is a top priority for every savvy warehouse manager. Well used space = increased efficiency and higher revenue. That’s why it’s important analyze and plan your space to achieve maximum results, without compromising safety or productivity.
A well-planned, neat, tidy and organized warehouse is quite achievable. Not only does it make for an engaging work atmosphere, it also reduces safety risks and makes your stocktaking a lot easier. It allows you to fit a lot more into a smaller area too. This will ultimately affect your bottom line because it impacts on vehicle costs, overheads such as lighting and climate control and if you are renting your space, the overall size of the space you have to pay for.
Stand back and have a critical look at your warehouse space. Is it actually too full? or is space just poorly utilized? Is it a sea of boxes and cartons that could be organized with the appropriate shelving systems? or are you simply trying to house too much stock under the one roof?
What is it that you want to achieve from your space, that you are currently not getting?
Here are some things to consider when looking for ways to increase the space in your warehouse:
1. Vertical shelving
It may be that you’re not making the most of the vertical space in your warehouse. Vertical shelving is a great way to maximise your storage space. If you already have a vertical shelving system installed, could it be made higher? Are you making use of the area covering cross isles in your plan – i.e. tunnel racking? How deep is the shelving – could you install double depth shelves?
Before you increase the height of your shelving, make sure it doesn’t impact on the effectiveness of your internal sprinkler system or any other emergency systems you have in your workplace.
2 Aisle Width
Maybe you can gain more space here! Design your aisle width as narrow as possible (taking into consideration the equipment that needs to operate in the aisles). However, don’t make them so tight that it poses efficiency or safety risks.
3. Erect a mezzanine floor
This mightn’t be a cheap option, but it opens the door to a second floor of storage space. A mezzanine floor is a permanent structure, and great for storing smaller amounts of stock or items that you don’t need frequent access to. It also provides an option for a packing area, freeing up your ground floor for bigger inventory items.
4. Store extra stock elsewhere
You may have fallen into the trap of keeping too much stock on hand. Consider the possibility of staggering your purchases so that you don’t have to stock such large quantities on the floor. Another option is an extra off-site storage site for large items or ones not frequently needed – this might also help solve some of your warehouse congestion.
Keep the design and layout of our warehouse as simple and practical as possible. This is the key to eliminating inefficiencies and congestion in your storage space. Use every square inch of room to its full advantage and you’ll enjoy the benefits of increased productivity and increased profits.
What do you think? Please leave a comment.
This is a guest post written by Louise Procter, a writer for Preowned Forklifts Australia. Living on the sunny South Coast of NSW, Louise enjoys writing articles that have a strong emphasis on OH&S practices and loves sharing helpful tips on creating safe and effective workplaces.
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