Efficiency in the warehouse is a grail for many managers. Achieving it can mean the difference between profitability and loss. Fortunately, the future will be full of efficiency options that can help the average warehouse manager save time and money. Consider these 5 ways in which you can improve the efficiency in your warehouse operations.
Warehouse automation is still a technology that is under development. At firms like Imaginot, engineers are close to rolling out a warehouse that stocks inventory and fills orders without any human intervention. The idea is to make warehouse operations safer. It is currently a fairly dangerous job to operate a forklift or work on most warehouse floors. When you use software and automation to move your forklifts around the warehouse, you can free your workers to work in an adjoining area on things that add value to your business like customization.
If you manufacture food or any other item at your warehouse, you’ll no doubt have some quality concerns when it comes to ensuring that the size of the goods that you are selling remains static. A checkweigher is a machine that sits at the end of the production line and weigh each package that is produced so that you will know that you have the right weight when you ship items.
When the items do not weigh the right amount, some machines are sophisticated enough to put them back in the queue for adjustment.
There are quite a few software packages that can help a warehouse become more efficient. One of the most popular right now will direct your forklift drivers to each pickup location on their pick list without them having to figure out the sequence that they fill orders with. The most efficient paths to get to any product are programmed into the computer- and then when orders come in they are run against the model, generating a scheduled path complete with verbal cues.
As safety continues to be a problem in the warehouse, another approach to making your warehouse a safer and more efficient place is to create forklift drones that are driven and controlled by remote workers at a call center. Because of the centralized nature of the remote site, you can easily add people to help out for a few hours at a time if necessary. You can also have your own employees not show up and really not miss them if your system is working.
Workers that drive drone forklifts can also be utilized to remotely wrap orders for shipping using specialized equipment.
In the past, warehouse equipment has relied upon using propane or other natural fuels in order to get enough power to move large loads around. Recently, some companies have switched to electric power that features some of the same battery components that are in electric cars. When you charge these electric forklifts using a solar roof array, you can save almost all the money that you would have spent on power. Recently, the country of Germany generated over half of the energy that was needed to power the country using solar power. So, even if your company is located in an area that has really mixed weather, you can still become more efficient by shifting to solar panels to power equipment because enough sunny days normally occur that a company can recognize significant gains.
Overall, working with increasing efficiency in your warehouse requires a lot of flexibility and some understanding of the latest trends. By using automation, workers, equipment, software, and consistency, firms that are interested in outperforming their competition in their facility should see their hopes validated.