Fleet Management & Forklift Safety Blog

Holiday Stress & Warehouse Productivity

Posted by Neil O'Connell, SVP Technology, Innovation, & Product Development on Dec 22, 2016 4:00:00 AM

For a warehouse operation, the holiday season may be one of the most stressful periods on the company calendar. Meeting productivity demands and tighter schedules can present an annual, stress-filled challenge — but there are solutions. stress-540820_640.jpg

One of the biggest issues managers face during this season is having enough labor to satisfy increased demand. Essentially, two big pain points converge:

  1. The volume of inventory moving through the warehouse increases exponentially.
  2. At the same time, operators and other employees request time off.

But, effectively measuring, analyzing, and improving all the moving parts that drive productivity will allow your operation to attain high throughput at the right times — even during the holidays. The question is, are you working with the right tools?

Tools to control warehouse productivity

You need to identify problems before you can fix them. About 52 percent of companies deploy telematics to do just that.  Modern Materials Handling cites advanced telematics as the best way to identify the inefficiencies and safety risks that impact warehouse operations.

Let’s not forget that safety is a real factor in the productivity equation. Impacts and accidents slow all movement in the warehouse and, depending on the timing, drastically cut productivity.

Telematic data provides a solution, helping to identify problems through a customizable dashboard that offers at-a-glance real-time, insights.

With telematics you can:

  • Monitor all the moving parts in a warehouse operation to determine where and how you can improve efficiency and productivity
  • Identify and monitor risky driver behavior so issues can be addressed immediately and accidents avoided
  • Ensure all safety checklists have been completed
  • Get a complete picture of lift-truck utilization — know exactly who is working, when, and where, so you can, for example, identify anyone not putting in a full shift.

What you gain with telematics

Leveraging telematic insights and actionable information is easier than you may think. For example, the Impact CommandPulseDX KPI dashboard (to be released in January) works together with the Operator Report Card feature to help reduce major risks to productivity.

You gain real-time insight regarding exactly where productivity is slowed and why.

  • Trucks can be re-routed as you see traffic snafus about to occur. Monitor congestion in a row or intersection of the warehouse, and identify and avoid accident-prone areas.
  • Driver behavior can improve because reports show exactly what is slowing operators down or putting them at risk for an accident. Telematics monitors forklift activities such as lift motion, travel times, idle time, etc.
  • Vehicle downtime and accidents caused by mechanical failure can be avoided as safety checklists, breakdown patterns, maintenance schedules, and battery charging are monitored and reported.

Deploying a telematics platform facilitates productivity — even under peak demand. Real-time data from fleet and warehouse operations can put you in control of holiday productivity and stress.

Topics: warehouse productivity, ROI, telematics platform, inventory tracking, Impact CommandPulseDX KPI dashboard