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4 warehouse challenges you must overcome - or lose productivity

Posted by Phil Van Wormer on Mar 24, 2015 6:00:00 AM

mountainclimbing3If you work in warehouse or distribution environments, there’s a good chance you recognize any of the challenges listed below. Do you have what it takes to overcome them? Let's take a look:

1. Forklift accidents

The epidemic of forklift accidents cost businesses as much as $135 million a year in injuries, lost work time, and equipment damage. Are you contributing to the dire statistics? If you lack a formal system to track the time, place, and cause of the impacts, you might be relying on your drivers to report the information. Minor impacts consequently go undetected and the opportunity to make changes before a more serious event occurs is lost. Have you explored sensor and tracking technologies to reduce impacts to a bare minimum?

 2. Expensive trucks and drivers

Forklift trucks and drivers account for as much as 80 percent of operating expenses. Are you wasting precious resources simply because you do not know whether your fleet is operating at capacity? The fact is the workhorse of your operation can also be the biggest drain on the bottom line. A single forklift is associated with 40 separate costs, bringing the total operating expense up to $145,000 a year for a $25,000 forklift truck. The lack of maintenance tracking alone can sideline vehicles – and downtime is one of the biggest productivity killers in the warehouse. In that light, the importance of right-sizing your fleet cannot be overstated. Do you possess the right tools to do so?

ProMat20153.  Manual data collection

Operations that rely on manual data collection are losing time and money. Are your drivers using hand scanners to read bar codes? Manual tasks associated with data collection and inventory tracking reduce driver productivity while increasing human error and rework. One of our customers freed up $500K by automating 26,000 hand scans a day. By eliminating the laborious task of hand scanning, your drivers can focus on what they do best – drive. As they start to move more pallets, you are left with an opportunity to redeploy labor or cut back on the number of vehicles. Do you know what it takes to make it happen?

4. Lack of real-time visibility

The lack of real-time visibility is the bane of many warehouse operations. Do you know what your fleet is doing at all times? Do you track each pallet? Do you know how much time each forklift spends active with load? If the answer is no, the good news is there will be plenty of room for improvement. Without the means to track your operation in real time, your best guess rather than facts will drive business decisions. By removing the blind spots in your warehouse you gain instant insight into fleet movement, driver activity, and vehicle utilization. Do you want to get started?

TotalTrax specializes in turning lift trucks into Smart Trucks. Let us introduce you to the solutions that you need to tackle these common warehouse challenges. Please visit our booth (#4281) at ProMat 2015 or contact us by filling out the form below (click on the headline if the form is not visible).

Keep in mind: Small changes in labor productivity beat large improvements in other cost areas. 

Topics: Forklift safety, real-time visibility, forklift accidents, automated data collection, driver productivity, data-driven insights