Whatever the size of your stockroom, it is likely you can increase storage capacity and improve accessibility without having to expand the storage area. Totebox explain how plastic storage containers and handling accessories optimise storage density and make finding items faster and easier.
Clearing out items and packaging materials that have not been used for years should be your first step to improving storage efficiency. It will probably create significant additional storage space from the outset. Consider whether you are likely to need any item over the next twelve months; if not, then it is unlikely to be earning its keep.
Careful planning will help you to create an efficient stockroom. Time spent picking orders, like all warehouse operations, is proportional to cost. A well organised stockroom will save you money.
Applying the 80/20 rule, it is likely that 20% of stored items represent 80% of picking activity, so frequently used items should be kept within easy reach.
Plastic stacking containers are ideal for maximising storage capacity. They are less expensive than most shelving units and provide denser storage, with boxes stacking on top of each other to form a compact storage unit – meaning that you can pack away much more stuff.
Plastic containers are also far more versatile than fixed units. They can be easily moved and reconfigured to suit your changing or seasonal storage needs.
Avoid part filled containers, use small containers for smaller or less frequently required items. Totebox Euro stacking containers allow users to create modular compact storage units with smaller containers stacking 2-up (side-by-side) on larger models. Totebox containers are available in a choice of colours, helping you to colour code items by theme.
Identification and accessibility are key to speedy picking. Store items that are frequently picked together next, or close, to each other.
Many operations use adhesive labels to identify contents, these can leave a sticky residue when removed which can become unsightly and make further labels hard to spot amongst the mess. Some Euro containers feature textured areas for the easy removal of temporary labels without leaving adhesive residue. Totebox also supply a card clip, which simply clips onto the container rim, making it easy to see and replace non-adhesive labels.
Open front stacking Euro containers provide instant access and allow easy identification of contents.
Open-front storage bins allow easy access to smaller items needed to complete an order, for example accessories and fixings. They can be hung off louvered panels situated at the ends of pallet racking, so that items stored in the bins are relevant to the goods held in the adjacent racking bay.
There are many types of plastic containers on the market and they vary greatly in quality. Plastic storage containers commonly sold at popular retail outlets may be relatively inexpensive but they tend to break after a short time and cannot be stacked particularly high, presenting a potential safety risk if they are carrying anything but light loads. Heavy duty storage boxes stocked by Totebox, are designed for tough storage and handling operations in factories and warehouses where they typically carry unit loads approaching 20Kg and are stacked up to ten high. They cost a little more, but should last a lifetime.
Wheeled dollies are nimbler and often faster than using a pallet and pump truck, they take the back-ache out of carrying full crates and enable heavy loads to be effortlessly wheeled under, and out from, shelving or a work bench. Totebox supply both single and double size-dollies, which carry one or two columns of stacked Euro size containers. A dolly handle will allow users to pull (instead of push) loaded dollies, allowing them to load the dolly higher as there is no need to see over the top when pulling a load.
Having completed your stockroom makeover, keep it clean. A tidy stockroom encourages others to keep it free from clutter, and helps to prevent accidents.
If you would like to find out more about how we can help you, get in touch today on 01327 340 177 or head over to our contact page for more details.