The everyday stuff that hits many shipping docks may not be as organized, or to such a scale, but any operation that stores, ships or receives valuable items is at risk of being hit – or is already being hit to some degree. In the above case, an organized group of thieves working at a shipping dock would simply wait until after a supervisor finished checking outbound shipments and add more to them. Since the shipments sat on the docks for 90 minutes, it gave the pilferers plenty of time to work on this. They would place extra cases onto staged pallets and those would ship out on trucks driven by colluding drivers. The next day, the drivers would sell the extra product for cash and split the proceeds with their warehouse accomplices.
Next time you’re standing there wondering where you’re going to put an inbound shipment while your dock is stacked with empty pallets, look at those doors (or at the void above them) – the copious space between the top of the doors and the ceiling is unused. Multiply each door by that amount of space, and in many operations, we’re talking serious amounts of unused square footage.
The easy solution: find a use for it with over-dock-door storage. You can’t really rack heavy stuff up there without some significant structure. The best thing to consider is empty pallets, which take up a ton of room and are relatively lightweight. And usually, they’re all over the floor and always in your way. Empty pallets clutter up the shipping & receiving docks or can take up positions in your racks that would be better suited to full pallets of finished goods or incoming shipments.
Over the last few months, we have been tweaking the conveyors offered on our website to offer a variety of options in a usable, easy-to-understand format. What we came up with is an online configuration system that allows great flexibility in changing the conveyor the way you want to change it.
Leaving a dock door open all day is an invitation to have someone stroll your aisles, check out your inventory, and perhaps take something. Most busy operations, particularly in good weather situations, leave those doors open. Often, the crew is busy with actual work; they don’t have the time to monitor visitors, delivery drivers, service providers, and every other person who strolls in.
Although most metal markets are still depressed from their all time highs of the last few years, it’s quite likely that steel pricing is going to increase in the near term. What’s that mean? It means that pricing for steel goods like warehouse racks, conveyors, shelving, mezzanines, and other material handling equipment will be on the rise.
“We are clearly going to see higher prices for May,” said Marty Forman, president of Forman Metal Co. in the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel. “Things aren’t going to explode, by any means, but the scuttlebutt is that steel prices are going up $15 to $20 a ton.”
The takeaway? Prices are as low as they will be for the near future right now.
With the advent of widespread e-commerce fulfillment, just-in-time principles, lean management, supply chain collaboration, globalization, the need for ever-faster response, and constant pressure to reduce expenses through headcount and shift reductions, today’s warehouse manager is being asked to do more than ever before.
There isn’t enough room at your average industrial workstation. In fact, many order pickers, packers, shippers, and other professionals might tell you that you could have a 10′ long workbench, and they’d still be squeezed for space. In a busy operation, it’s a constant battle between availability of materials and space for doing the actual work. So what’s the solution? A larger workbench top? According to Packmaterials.com(registration required, but a pretty useful resource from Dehnco – we have reprinted the entire piece here, with permission), if there is not enough workstation storage area a bigger table won’t help – and may hurt.
The tabletop surface should not be considered storage space in the first place. So that leaves the unanswered question: how do you get more storage space for needed materials?
Just the perfect gift for the kids (or, okay the adult), Rokenbok’s “Conveyor Company” playset. If you need help “installing” it, I’m sure there will be volunteers available. Poke around Rokenbok’s site – you’ll find add-on’s and accessories that can help you, er, your kids, add to your conveyor system.