Moving into a new warehouse is always an exciting day. Warehouse organization is important. Having tons of vast open space gets you in the mood for ideas and expands your business to do more things. Before entirely moving into any new warehouse space, knowing a few things beforehand is essential.
The optimization of your layout directly correlates to higher efficiency and productivity. Without the proper organization and systems, you could easily have lower productivity or quickly run out of usable space.
Keep reading if you’re willing to commit to having the best warehouse space.
Always Plan Ahead
Having a warehouse organization plan before doing anything is one of the keys to achieving the goals you want to reach. Before starting operations in your new warehouse, you must take in all the information you can. Figuring out where your workspaces will go, what type of inventory they’ll need, and where to place the final output.
Be sure to locate any equipment or machinery that may be needed to stock shelves or retrieve merchandise as needed. these may be as simple as a wall ladder or as big as a pallet jack or a lift.
You’ll also need to check if your warehouse has the proper facilities to protect any outdoor electrical or plumbing lines. If not, it might be time to look into getting a new aluminum-insulated exterior access panel.
Because the planning phase is vital to your operations, you may also decide to use a few Computer-Aided Design (CAD) software to get a visual sense of where things will go so you can maximize floor space.
If you aren’t comfortable doing this alone, you can hire a warehouse consultant to help you figure out how to achieve your goals. Experience is the best teacher, and warehouse consultants have plenty of first-hand experience in this field.
If all else fails, you can hire warehouse builders to completely build your warehouse from start to finish. This way you know your warehouse is customized for exactly what you want and need it to be.
Optimize Your Floor Space
Did you know the optimal space you should use for storage is only 22-27 percent? Staying within this range ensures you’ll have enough room for systematic workflow. Going over this range means you might have extra trouble with logistics within your warehouse.
The most fantastic way to optimize your floor space for the best warehouse organization is by using the available vertical space. The most common way to stack your inventory is to use pallet racks. You get quick access to all your supplies organized on neat pallets, so you spend less time looking for specific items.
During this time, you should consider where your storage racks, workspaces, and other equipment should go. The spacing between each shelf also matters here; too much space and you risk losing precious floor space.
However, if there’s too little space, your forklifts or pallet jacks may have issues passing through the isles. Having the perfect balance between accessibility and space utilization is the key. After all, the quicker it takes inventory to reach the required stations, the faster you can produce output.
Using a Warehouse Management System
Because of the massive amount of supplies moving into and out of your warehouse, keeping track of it can be a hassle. A Warehouse Management System (WMS) is the lifesaver you are looking for in this case. The WMS aims to ensure your items get stocked on time, where things go, and how often a particular item gets picked.
While a WMS doesn’t contribute to designing the perfect warehouse directly, it provides the support you need for a successful operation. For example, if you needed to find out about a specific unit, you’d be referring to the WMS.
The WMS also lets you eliminate any obsolete inventory. Because you have information about stock at all times, it becomes easy to find out which items you need to remove. Space is valuable, after all, and now that you’ve gotten rid of unused items, you have made space for new things.
Testing Your New System
You’ll need to test whether your warehouse organization plans meet the expected reality. Before investing in all the expensive new equipment and software, it’s essential to see if your concept works on a small scale. Try to put a few markers where the different sections will go, and walk around to see if you can move freely.
An open dialogue with your employees and co-workers on the plan is vital for this. It’ll be your team who is constantly moving around, and they’ll quickly learn the layout. As such, feedback from your team will be valuable in ensuring they can do the work well and they can do it quickly.
Hopefully, these tips gave you some ideas as to how you can make your warehouse operation a successful one. It’s important to remember that money well spent on any of the above will give you returns many times over. Success isn’t too far away with a brand new space and a highly efficient workflow.