A warehouse without adequate shelving can easily turn into a disorganized mess. Boxes stacked up high on top of one another can contribute to lost goods and cost valuable time when employees are forced to retrieve items trapped under large piles.
Shelving turns a warehouse into an efficient, coordinated operation that can generate more revenue at a lower cost. Here are some simple ways to use shelving to maximize the potential of your business:
Maximize storage capacity by filling every inch of space
While floor space is finite, shelving extends vertically to create layers and layers of storage potential in a building. By looking upwards, you can multiply your storage density many times over, allowing for more stock and higher turnaround.
Aisle planning can help to minimize dead space between shelving units. Consider backing shelves against each other and lining the walls with shelving to improve your ratio of storage to access.
Following a few simple principles suggested by professional metro shelving distributors, you can critically transform and improve the way you approach storage planning.
Vary shelf height for your needs
Goods come in a variety of different weights, heights and shapes. Fortunately, shelving can be customized to reduce the amount of wasted space between levels. This efficiency might not seem like a lot in individual cases but can account for critical increases in storage potential!
One great option is to group goods into size brackets, enabling you to tailor your shelving system while maintaining a flexible storage solution. Varying shelf height is ideal for long-term planning.
Create a tiered organization system
A slightly more advanced step in varying the height of your shelves (although still a simple process!) is to structure your shelves into differing tiers. This is a user-friendly way of giving your workers an instinctive insight into where an item might be stored.
Typically, this is done by storing smaller items higher up and larger items lower down. The advantage of this is that smaller items on the higher tiers are still easily retrievable by ladder – contact the experts at srs-i.com to learn how to plan shelving heights efficiently.
Switch to heavy-duty shelving
While light duty shelving has its advantages, a long-term storage solution can ultimately see real benefits from using heavy duty shelving. Storage that can tolerate a variety of weights lowers risk makes risk assessment easier and can suit the needs of a dynamic business that has changing needs.
Add a mezzanine to your upper tiered storage
The ultimate option to expand upwards and maximize square footage is a shelf supported mezzanine. This upper tier platform can essentially add another floor to your warehouse. Comprehensive stair or lift access makes it ideal for accessing goods stored on the upper tiers of your shelving solution.
Alternatively, a mezzanine level can be the ideal space to relocate your workstations. By capping part of your storage at the mezzanine level, you can create a large space to be filled with IT equipment and filing, while keeping your stock on the lower tiers for easy access.
Switch to open shelving
Open shelving systems improve visibility, reduce dead weight and improve access. While closed shelving systems are useful in many instances, it is far more efficient to keep storage as open as possible.
Consideration must be made for dust or sun damage however in a lean, efficient warehouse with fast turnaround; most items are not susceptible to these dangers.
Just a few of these simple steps can greatly enhance your warehouse operations, through clever and agile use of shelving!