Buyers want choices, and retailers have NO choice but to deliver; lots of variety, a myriad of brands, every color of the rainbow, and flavor under the sun. This is the best-case scenario for the finicky consumer, but a major headache at the distribution center. DC managers are forced to handle ever-rising SKUs, both fast and slow-moving products, in the same amount of storage space. It means they have to be very strategic about how they use every inch of storage.
We have some affordable advice! An excellent way to stretch your current warehouse space to accommodate more SKUs is to convert lower-level pallet rack locations to rack-mounted carton flow for the slow to medium-moving SKUs.
Here’s How Carton Flow Will Increase Pick Slots and Save Space
1. Create 35 Pick Slots per Bay – By converting lower level selective pallet rack to carton flow rack, you will create up to 35 additional pick slots within an 8’ wide pallet rack bay. This will free up needed full pallet locations for faster moving SKUs.
2. Consolidate Slower Picks – A standard carton flow shelf designed with 8’ deep lanes will accommodate items that move 8-10 cases in 1 to 2 weeks.
3. Improve Inventory Rotation – Carton flow’s First-In/First-Out (FIFO) inventory rotation is ideal for dated or perishable products, freeing full pallet slots for more organized, consolidated picks.
4. Increase Productivity – Carton flow added anywhere along the typical pick path and placed strategically at the beginning of rows will concentrate picks closer to the dock and decrease travel time to boost productivity.
5. Decrease Labor Costs – up to 50% – Labor cost per pick is dramatically reduced by consolidating inventory within a condensed footprint and separating the picking and replenishment activities in opposite aisles.
6. Gain Needed Flexibility – Carton flow provides picking flexibility with numerous shelf beds, roller, and pick trays for both full case and broken case selection. Cartons or individual items are picked to either conveyor or pallet jack.
7. Benefit from the Latest Technologies & Expertise – Today’s carton flow options offer greater durability and capacity, up to 45 lbs. per sq. ft., vs. older lightweight track systems. Full wheel bed designs, roller track options, lane dividers, and various picking accessories provide consistent product flow with flexible product slotting.
Ask our order picking pros! We’ll help you convert your lower-level pallet rack system to a productive order-picking system to increase pick slots and productivity.