How to Improve Warehouse Efficiency and Maximize Space

These days, maximizing storage space is a major concern and top priority for warehouse facilities all over the world. As supply chains continue to scramble to meet high product demands from online orders, it’s important to integrate feasible storage solutions to accommodate large inventory numbers and optimize operations. A clean and organized warehouse operates as smoothly as a well-oiled machine. Here are some great tips to help you improve your warehouse efficiency. 

Assess Your Current Floor Plan

When it comes to improving your warehouse operations, the best place to start is by assessing and auditing your current floor plan to identify problem areas that need to be fixed. Calculate the total square footage of your warehouse storage space and your current pallet racking configuration. When was the last time you updated your current pallet racking system? If it’s been longer than a few years, then it may be time for a change. In fact, you should be re-evaluating your pallet racking and storage unit configuration at least once a year to make sure it still fits your needs and make necessary adjustments.

Maximize and Optimize Available Storage Space

Don’t underestimate the value of so-called dead space in your warehouse. Even if the space isn’t sufficient to house an elaborate pallet racking system, there are other solutions that could still work well there. Floor stacking bulky, heavy, and oddly shaped items that aren’t in as high demand as other pieces of inventory and are too difficult to store on pallet racking systems is a great solution to maximize your warehouse space as much as possible. Not only does this system find a home for items that are harder to store, but it also reduces clutter and helps you maintain a reliable organizational system that maximizes safety standards and warehouse operations. 

Make Use of Vertical Space

When you’ve officially exhausted all of the available floor space in your warehouse, there’s nowhere left to go but up. Vertical stacking is one of the most feasible warehouse storage solutions that allows you to not only maximize, but also extend your storage capacity. Several steps need to be taken to make this happen.

First, research your local warehouse building codes and by-laws to guarantee you’re complying with regulations. Next, measure the amount of usable vertical space you have available from the floor to the top of your highest stacked item. Evaluate your current inventory and relocate slower moving items to higher up to make room for more in-demand items on lower and easily accessible storage areas. 

Lastly, research your various racking options. If you already have a modular pallet racking system in place, then you may be able to add on vertical racking systems. Otherwise, you may need to purchase an entirely new racking system to accommodate vertical stacking. 

Choose from Different Types of Warehouse Racking Systems in Toronto

Every warehouse is unique and has different storage solution requirements. But there’s always a racking system that’s perfect for your needs, whatever they may be. Here is a list of just some of the different types of warehouse equipment near the GTA. 

  • Pallet racking system. As a staple storage solution used in most warehouses, pallet racking systems consist of metal beams and vertical rows that are used to stack wooden pallets full of inventory. They’re great for maximizing floor space in warehouses. Pallets can be accessed from various angles using a forklift or other material handling equipment. 
  • Selective racking system. Selective racking systems get their name from their easily accessible design. Forklift operators and warehouse workers can easily reach, access, or select the items they need without having to move other inventory out of the way. 
  • Double deep pallet rack. This is a combination of a modular and compact pallet racking storage unit. It has double the storage capacity because the racks are positioned side to side and can go two rows deep with accessibility from both sides. Double deep pallet racks maximize storage capacity by reducing the number of aisles in your warehouse. 
  • Drive-in and drive-thru pallet racking. These structures consist of movable rails instead of static beams. Special types of forklifts can be driven directly into the structure to retrieve pallet racks and inventory from the inside. With the drive-thru option, forklifts can drive directly through the structure to an aisle on the other side instead of having to back out. 
  • Push-back pallet rack. This pallet racking system has a mobile cart or rail that’s pushed back to make room for new pallet racks or inventory. When inventory is retrieved from the front, the pallet rack in the back moves forward. 
  • Cantilever racking system. Warehouses that store a lot of bulky and oblong objects or inventory can benefit greatly from a cantilever racking system. These storage units consist of long arms that extend from the steel frames to support heavy and long items like pipes, beams, timber, drywall, and other building materials. 

Optimize Warehouse Workflow

A well-organized warehouse has a number of important benefits that can optimize the workflow within your facility. It can help you maximize your storage capacity, increase and maintain worker safety standards, and boosts overall efficiency and productivity in your warehouse. Configuring your pallet racking system based on inventory type and dimensions also improves the inventory input and output processes within your warehouse and ensures that all shipments are properly accounted for.

Adopt New Logistics Technology

The supply chain industry is constantly evolving to meet modern demands. State-of-the-art logistics technology that includes the latest warehouse management software (WMS) and cloud-based inventory tracking systems makes it easier to track your inventory and communicate with various associates in real-time. Automated logistics solutions also improve communication standards within the warehouse and between multiple areas within your supply chain. 

Establish a Clear Labelling System

Product labelling is an integral part of every warehouse’s organizational system. Clearly printed and displayed labels make it easier for order pickers and floor workers to quickly identify the products they’re looking for, which reduces picking time and maximizes the efficiency of the in and out flow of your warehouse. Use a colour-coded labelling system with large and visible font to help workers locate and read labels faster. 

Innovative Warehouse Racking Solutions in Ontario

Canadian Rack Technologies Inc. provides fully customizable new and used warehouse racking solutions for small and large facilities across Toronto and the GTA. After performing a thorough pre-health and safety review of your facility, our highly knowledgeable and experienced technicians and engineers will provide the ideal pallet racking solutions to maximize space, efficiency, safety standards in your warehouse. Contact us today to learn more about our wide range of pallet racking solutions in Toronto. 

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