Pallet racks enable warehouse workers to organize and easily access inventory. Optimizing your pallet racking system helps streamline warehouse operations. Consider implementing these three tips for an efficient pallet racking system.
Create Narrow Aisles
Narrow aisles maximize the use of floor space for storage. Typical aisles measure 10.5 feet or more, while narrow aisles (NAs) range from 8.5 to 10.5 feet. Very narrow aisles (VNAs) are an astonishing 5 to 7 feet wide.
If you narrow your facility’s aisles, you must invest in forklifts that can navigate tight spaces. Most narrow aisle forklifts are electric.
One of the benefits of electric forklifts over propane is a lower total cost of ownership, and they can help you save even more money by allowing you to create narrow aisles. Electric reach trucks, articulating forklifts, and 3-wheel electric forklifts are some of the best machines for safely maneuvering in narrow aisles.
Choose Pallet Racks With the Right Weight Capacity
Quality pallet racks will help prevent your pallet rack system from failing. The racking load capacity is the maximum weight the system can support, and the pallet rack uprights and beams partially determine this.
Invest in the Right Uprights and Beams
Pallet rack uprights are columns that determine the system’s height and depth. The beams determine the system’s width—they run horizontally and connect the uprights.
Ensure your pallet rack uprights and beams are rated to support your pallets’ weight. Loads that are too compact, dense, or heavy for the pallet rack can cause the system to fail.
Reevaluate Product Slotting
Another tip for an efficient pallet racking system is to reevaluate product slotting. Over time, product characteristics and consumer demand may change and affect the product’s optimal location in your facility.
Reevaluate product slotting to simplify order fulfillment and lower operational costs. You can organize products based on the following characteristics:
- Product type
- Item weight
- Item size
- Stock Keeping Units (SKU)
Keeping your fastest-moving units in the most accessible locations makes placing and picking them easier. Consider factors like seasonality and consumer trends as you strategize product slotting.
Creating narrow or very narrow aisles, optimizing pallet rack capacity, and reevaluating product slotting can increase your warehouse’s efficiency and safety. Implement these changes for significant operational improvements.