Warehouse racking is one of the fundamental parts of the infrastructure that allows a warehouse to maintain a high level of organization and facilitate seamless operations. Well-designed racking systems that allow warehouses to maximize their use of space and streamline picking are worth their weight in gold.
Racking that is not well planned or designed can have a significant detrimental effect on a wide range of factors, including use of floor and vertical space, access to inventory, shipping area, docking locations as well as a number of others.
Given that so much depends on your racking system, it always pays to spend time planning the layout and features that will optimize productivity. To get you started, here are a few things that you should consider:
- Know Your Storage Requirements
The type of racking system that is best for your warehouse will depend on the type of goods that you need to store. The racking that you need to store smaller items on pallets will be significantly different. You will also need to consider different options depending on whether your stock has a high turnover or usually spends a longer time on the shelves.
- Get Feedback from Your Managers and Contractors
As the owner of a business, you probably spend the majority of your time in an office or in meeting rooms. It is likely that you have at best a loose grasp of how storage is managed on a day-to-day basis. Therefore, the best way of ensuring that your warehouse racking system is fit for purpose is to consult the managers and contractors that use the system
- Choose a Racking System
There are several types of racking system that are available. The type that you choose will depend entirely on the needs of the warehouse. Choose from among selective racks, drive-in racks and drive-through racks, push back racking, and flow racks.
- Make the Most of Your Space
To someone who walks into your warehouse, it may seem like a limitless space. However, you will quickly learn that this space is subject to constraints when it is in use. Make sure that you spend a significant amount of time brainstorming the best ways to organize the racks. It can help to draw several scale diagrams to make sure that you have come upon the best use of space.
- Leave the Door Open for Expansion
When you are designing your racking system, keep in mind that there will likely come a time when you will want to expand your storage space. You can leave the door open to future reorganization by investing in modular racking that can be taken apart and put back together in a different configuration.
The racking system in a warehouse is usually the deciding factor on how efficient a business is. When installing a new system or adapting an old one, you should make sure to follow the five tips above if you are serious about perfection.