An effective warehouse is the core of your business. But how to make sure it runs as efficiently as possible? The truth is that technology, storage, and safety methods are rapidly changing, and it’s important to keep up. Follow these innovative tips, and you’ll ensure your warehouse not only reaches peak efficiency, but also remains effective and relevant long into the future.
1. Go Smarter, Not Bigger
When storage space feels tight, a lot of people start to think that the solution is to invest in additional storage space or even relocate to a new warehouse. However, you can save money and moving time by going smarter with the space you already have.
Examine how much aisle space you actually need and go smaller when possible. Consider taller shelving and racking pallets in higher densities. Make sure items that you use / need access to often are in lower, easy-to-access areas while more long-term items are stored higher up (or further back) and in greater densities.
2. Offer Specialized Training
A major problem a lot of warehouses have is not just employee error, but also poor employee retention. However, both can be curbed when the right training programs are offered. All employees should receive regular training on the latest safety and efficiency procedures, for example. Some outside companies even offer highly specialized training programs just for warehouse workers, and these can be very useful in increasing production.
Good employees are also more likely to stay when you offer such training, as it will increase their skills and give them a brighter future.
3. Update Forklifts
The forklift has long been a warehouse staple, but it’s important to make sure that you’re only using the most current ones that have less room for error. For example, telescopic forklifts involve a telescopic forward reach boom, which allow for more flexibility (with precision!) and can both place and retrieve objects more efficiently. Always make sure your forklift operators are fully licensed and experienced with each kind of forklift you utilize.
4. Connect Employee Phones
Most businesses these days rely on mobile communication platforms, and warehouses are no exception. Make sure employees have updated phones and apps that connect well with each other. It’s also important to consider the future of tech in this area. For example, windows programs are projected to become outdated on mobile devices in the next few years, so switching over to newer platforms in a good idea. Always run tests before programs are actually implemented during workdays.
5. Go for Automation
As far as new storage technology goes, one innovative solution you will want to consider is automated storage. Involving the use of robotics and computerized organization, automated storage helps to cut organizational costs in the long run and increases accuracy and productivity. For example, a robotic arm can be used to retrieve precise items as needed, allowing for tighter storage spaces and decreased need for human intervention. And thanks to the rapid speed of orders being received and carried out, the amount of orders being fulfilled in a day will increase.
It’s also worth noting that automated warehouse storage helps to lower warehouse accidents and increase safety. By relying on precise computerized settings, there is less room for human error. In fact, the key human workers you will need present at the warehouse will be there simply to oversee operations and carry out the few tasks that computer and robotic automation cannot.