Pallet Storage – Choosing the Best System for your Business
The majority of warehouses today rely on some form of pallet storage for, at least, a portion of their inventory. When chosen with care, these systems can significantly increase both the productivity and profitability of a business. While installing a single system may be sufficient in some cases, where the range of goods to be stored is more diverse, it will often be necessary to combine two or more different options for maximum efficiency.
Either way, choosing the solution that best meets your company’s needs will be a critical factor in determining your operation’s overall efficiency and cost-effectiveness. So what factors should you consider when choosing your pallet storage system?
Static or Dynamic System?
A dynamic (automated) storage and retrieval system may be the best option should you need to make the maximum use of limited space and a minimal workforce. However, the initial investment can be quite high, and your employees will also need to undergo special training before they can begin to use the new system. If the startup cost is likely to be an obstacle, there are several static pallet storage systems to choose from, each with its particular benefits. Adjustable racking combines economy with versatility and is often the right choice for several reasons.
Firstly, it is quick and easy to install while being sufficiently flexible to handle a wide range of pallet types. Where floor space is at a premium, this type of system can be extended vertically without increasing the system footprint. Adding extra support beams will allow you to accommodate heavier loads. Furthermore, when configured with very narrow aisles, the picking and packing processes can be streamlined by making use of a suitable counter-balance forklift, reach truck or turret truck. Adjustable racking is an ideal pallet storage option for managing a wide range of products, especially when the individual SKU counts may be high.
Drive-in racking comes with support rails that allow forklifts to access pallets at height. This type of racking will often be the best choice for handling a single product where turnover is relatively low. The system is adaptable for either FIFO or LIFO accounting. The combination of high volume storage with as much as 50% more use of your existing floor space, also means that drive-in racking can be a good option for pallet storage of cool or frozen goods.
Ready to Automate?
There is no doubt that automation has revolutionised all manner of businesses and the storage industry is no exception. For those who may not wish to commit to a fully automated solution, an aisle-free, deep-lane racking system in which the packing and picking tasks are performed by a mechanical “mole” offers warehouse owners a great compromise. These moles are designed to provide greater capacity than any manual system and are easy to use, safe, reliable and cost little to operate and maintain.
If, on the other hand, you want a fully-automated pallet storage system that you can control remotely, have a chat with Storage Management Systems (SMS) about their FAM system. This option offers the highest density storage capacity and throughput flexibility of any such system, worldwide.