Keeping Tools Organized in the Warehouse

Having a warehouse organized efficiently will minimize both time waste as well as motion waste. So how do you keep everything organized in a warehouse that's constantly changing?

1. Design a floor plan

This is the first step because it determines the entire layout of the store. It also lets you visualize how everything will look before it's even in place. Keep in mind the different people that will move in and out of the warehouse so that the layout is efficient for everyone involved. It should be easy to understand and easy to train new employees.

You'll want to group like-items together making it easy to find what's needed. Also consider the 80/20 rule: a space for the top 20% of products should be the easiest to find so they can quickly be picked. While designing and reorganizing a warehouse will take some work upfront, it will dramatically increase worker productivity. 

2. Storage and Shelving

Quality and quantity are both important here; you'll need enough storage and storage that's going to last. Pallet racking systems are often preferred because of their durability, safety, and ability to make the most of your vertical space. For the foundation, warehouse racks are the go-to, and there are several types available such as drive-in, drive-through, flow-through, push back shelving, and cantilever racks. The best choice will depend on the nature of your organization, the volume and size of products, and amount of people working within the area. Also think about shipping containers, storage bins, and coolers or freezers for temperature-controlled inventory.

3. Label Everything

Before placing anything in your newly designed warehouse, make sure everything is labeled. Keeping shelves, pallets, and storage properly labeled will steamline finding those items when they're needed in the future. 

4. Maximize Your Space

Make the best use of the space you have, and this includes vertically. Stacking items and using stacked shelves maximizes space and produces a cleaner, more organized warehouse. 

5. Schedule Regular Cleaning and Maintenance

While a warehouse may start clean, that doesn't mean it stays clean. Be sure to block out times on a regular schedule for cleaning and organizing the warehouse to keep your system running smoothly.

6. Use Shelving on Fences

As workers walk around with tools, working in different areas, there often aren't easy places to rest order forms, papers, tools, and phones. Attach a Fence Tray to the areas your workers spend most of their time and listen to them thank you as they keep everything they need in one place.

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