Datalinx Blog

Welcome to the Datalinx blog. Here we cover a range of posts and conversations based around our experiences of warehousing, barcoding and Sage software.

Improve your warehouse layout

3 ways to improve your warehouse layout

Alongside Warehouse Manager 200, or X3, having an efficient warehouse layout would be the difference between processing your customers’ orders with maximum efficiency and not.

1 - Choose the right racking to suit the size of your warehouse

It can be a daunting task when choosing the most appropriate racking for your warehouse and choosing the wrong kind of racking could at best lead to an adverse effect on the efficiency of your warehouse or, at worst, an expensive re-fit within a short time frame.

The size of your building and its structure will directly impact what type of racking system you should be utilising in your warehouse.

You will need to identify:

  • The correct pallet size(s) for your operation
  • Decide what storage racking and handling system to use
  • Choose which vehicle is best for each operation
  • Work out the space needed for receipts and despatch areas, supporting areas & facilities

 2 - Design your warehouse to be safe and make life easier for your staff

Ensuring that your warehouse is safe not only means less accidents and increased costs to you as a business; it also helps your operation to run more smoothly and efficiently.

 3 - Ensure that the space in your warehouse is used effectively

With so much to fit into a warehouse, it is not only essential that you use all of the space you have, but also use it in the most effective way possible.

  • Storage Space: To store goods and materials
  • Office Space: Can include meeting rooms, reception and mail rooms
  • Loading Docks: For shipping and receiving goods
  • Light Industrial Space: Use for the processing of materials
  • Computer Centres

Only include areas that are absolutely essential to the running of your business. Underused areas could be used for other, more productive parts of your warehouse.

For warehouses that store a wide variety of products, or where stock rotates on a seasonal basis, the versatility of your racking will be a major point to consider. Some racking systems are limited in the variety of different goods they can be used to store.

The answer is that if your stock rotation, access requirements and variety of goods are all likely to change frequently, your racking needs to be able to as flexible and versatile as possible to support your needs.

 

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Warehouse Racking

Warehouse Racking
Warehouses and warehouse racking can be found in a variety of sizes, from that suitable for a small room to giant racking systems for very large warehouses.
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Dark Stores

I love the latest developments in warehousing and due to the increase in online shopping; companies have developed huge distribution centres dedicated purely to picking online shopping orders. The leaders of this trend are supermarkets with online food shopping sales predicted to reach £14.6bn by 2018.
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7 Warehousing Sins

Does your warehouse commit any of my 7 sins?
As a warehouse systems consultant there is nothing better than visiting a new warehouse and in my experience I have noticed there are 7 deadly sins, which all cost businesses money and are very simple to fix with the implementation of barcodes and a warehouse management system. 
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Naming and labelling warehouse bins and shelves

b2ap3_thumbnail_IMG_6318.JPGA warehouse management system (WMS) requires the warehouse bin locations to be barcoded for efficient usage.  Barcoding eliminates the manual entry of data and the inherent risk of typing mistakes; scanning barcoded data is much faster than typing.

The naming of the bin locations should be designed to give a ‘grid map’ of the warehouses / yards / storage areas so it is clear where each bin location is situated within each branch.

Any ‘guidance’ that will be given during picking operations in the WMS will normally use an alphanumeric bin sequence. Therefore, when designing the bin code format, thought also needs to be given to the most efficient ‘walk’ around the warehouse when typically picking stock.

Two common examples of a naming convention are described below.

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