Tips For Improving Material Handling Efficiency

If you are running a warehouse, you need to be sure that you are as efficient as possible when it comes to bringing in new products, storing the products, and gathering the products again to send them out to stores. If you are not able to handle these operations with efficiency, then you are going to be cutting into your profit margins. Here are some tips for improving material handling efficiency so that you don't lose any money unnecessarily.

1. Compartmentalize Your Warehouse

Instead of storing items that are in the same field or items that are similar next to one another, look at the shipment data that you are receiving and determine which types of items are being used to fill the majority of your orders. For example, if you notice that a smaller subset of the items that you store in your warehouse are being used to fill more than 70% of all orders that you receive, you need to create a smaller warehouse within your warehouse to store these items. By compartmentalizing your warehouse and storing items together that are often used to fill the same order, you will be able to improve the efficiency of your order fulfillment and your storage.

In order to truly compartmentalize your warehouse, you will need to treat the area where you are storing items that are commonly used to fulfill orders as though it is its own separate warehouse. Assign separate material handling tools and equipment, such as forklifts, and make sure that you have a separate staff managing that part of the warehouse that is fully capable of managing its own material handing equipment.

2. Store All of Your Most Demanded Items at a Height Between the Waist and the Shoulder

Your next step is to store all of the most demanded items, or the items that are most commonly used to fulfill orders, at a height where both people and forklifts are able to retrieve them. You want to store the items between the height of the average person's waist and the average person's shoulder. This will make the items more accessible to workers who might need to grab a few extra copies of a product to totally fill an order and will reduce the amount of adjustments that a forklift operator needs to make in order to be certain that he or she is able to get the product.

For more information, talk to a company like Independent Lift Truck Of Alaska that specializes in warehouse material handling supplies. They will have tips for making the equipment that they sell more efficient.