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THE FEASIBILITY STUDY FOR WAREHOUSE

Warehouse
A warehouse is a commercial building for storage of goods. Warehouses are used by
manufacturers, importers, exporters, wholesalers, transport businesses, customs, etc. They are
usually large plain buildings in industrial areas of cities and towns.

Packing Hall Layout


The Client was running out of space for storage and in addition wanted to increase the capacity
of the packing operation.
The relative capacities of the machines according to the existing layout were expressed as a
"weighted" arrows overlay on the current layout. The thickness of the arrows indicates the
demand, the source from the relative stores area and the destination. From this exercise it was
clear that the flow was fragmented, the sources varied according to the wrapping machine type
and the W.I.P. stock location. Also, due to the haphazard orientation of the machines, supply
routes and finished goods routes were very inefficient.
The proposal was to realign the current machines in the packing room and take advantage of
multiple in feed pallet stackers. Output from 4 of the slower machines were fed to one and the 2
(1 existing plus 1 new) faster machines into another. Output from the pallet stackers was fed to a
common stretch wrapping machine resulting in a single source output area for all production.

Hanging Garments Feasibility Layout


The Client wished to relocate to their own premises from their existing multi-user contract. On
finding what they thought was a suitable site, we were asked to evaluate current and future
requirements and determine the most appropriate layout for the building. As a brown field site,
the initial thoughts were that although fragmented it was likely accommodate the operation.
We conducted a site survey and familiarized ourselves with the complexities of the building
(which were considerable). Set on numerous levels including a 2nd floor that would be treated as
a mezzanine structure, and structural unalterable separate chambers; we set about trying to fit
the operation around the building. The challenge was to define the internal transport systems
without creating pinch points and areas of undue vulnerability such as lifts.
These established, we set about trying to maximize the storage capabilities within the cube of the
building, whilst still bearing in mind the operational flows, thus not compromising the efficiency
of the operation.
Set against tight deadlines for the imminent procurement of the building, we were able to
determine that the building was unsuitable for the desired purpose without significant

development, which the client was unprepared to consider and we were able to prevent the
expensive purchase of an unviable building.

Focused Skills
We aim to cover the broadest spectrum of warehouse related activities from planning and
scoping high level feasibility studies for new builds, to detailed layout and resource modeling
through re-engineering of established but faltering operations to maximize productivity.
We also undertake data analysis & manipulation studies for clients as either discrete projects or
as interim management roles. Such assignments often resulting in bespoke planning models
which have become a significant part of our service offering.

Warehouse Design
At the heart of good warehouse design is good information. We use in-house developed models
to reflect current stock activities as well as forecast growth. Understanding the relative activities
are important because we can then understand the amount higher density storage that can be
used; confident of continuous & good utilization levels, maximizing the use of building cube.
We are also able to dynamically model changes in stock cover, growth, seasonality and their
effects on the final design. This allows our clients the try alternative scenarios with the
confidence that they will accurately reflect the operational parameters "on the ground".
Human & mechanical resources are also determined to provide the complete package. We can
use our clients' standards, although since the layout or buildings are likely to be different, these
will inevitably need to be re-evaluated. With many years experience in industrial engineering,
we can synthesize new standards from known elements from our own library or use approved
work study techniques such as MTM to build standards from scratch. Previous independent
evaluation - post implementation - indicates these standards to be within 8% (typically 5%) of
observed standards in the live operation.

Workspace Layout Design


Though we specialize in maximizing warehouse space utilization, our methods transfer equally
well to the factory floor. Similar principles apply with economy of materials and employee
movements being paramount.
Layouts for warehouses are usually based on our design work that will have produced the ideal
storage types and apertures or units required. This information is transferred to a CAD layout of
the site and manipulated to achieve the very best work flows and cube utilization of the building.
We also undertake site surveys where existing CAD drawings of the site don't exist. These will
form accurate templates for new layouts. Drawings reflect true dimensions of equipment where

known or realistic marketplace norms where appropriate which can then be passed to suppliers
during the procurement process.

Stock Face Review


The layout was initially configured to maximize the locations available for storage, resulting in
longer depth lanes of this block stack operation. This gave rise to insufficient ground floor
locations for the SKU range. As a consequence multiple SKUs were mixed vertically over a floor
location and therefore many housekeeping movements to access the lower positions.
Analysis of the demand profile revealed a fundamental shift from the original planning data,
revealing a high proportion of deadlines and an increase in low stock / slow moving lines.
Backed up by accurate analysis, it was recommended that he total number of deep lane locations
available were significantly reduced and more shorter lanes provided. This resulted in a
reduction of 10% for overall locations, but critically an increase of 19% for available faces.
In addition a change in layout to accommodate fast mover towards the front and slow to the
rear, meant that 70% of movements were now conducted in the front third of the warehouse,
significantly reducing travel times.

Manage the Warehouse


Like Purchasing, warehouse management has many best practices. A couple best practices Avery
recommends are using effective slotting tools and bar coding. Effective slotting tools include the
placement of high-volume items close to the point of shipping, use of clear slotting information
under each item on the shelf, using the same slotting information on pick documents, and sorting
the slot numbers into a sequence that supports a no-backtrack path for the picker. Bar codes
can help ensure that the right incoming product is put in the right place and that the right
outgoing product is picked in the right quantities. Avery notes that by using bar code picking,
not only can you pick faster, but you can also pick with virtually 100% accuracy. In his
experience, Avery has seen bar code implementations pay for themselves within six months,
which leads me to the most attractive aspect of warehouse management for purchasing
professionals: the opportunity for cost savings. Avery shares that fixing an inefficient warehouse
operation can produce labor cost savings of 30 to 50%. So even if youve never dreamed of
being the purchasing and warehouse manager, such an expanded role may help you deliver
more measurable bottom line results.

Warehouse Solutions
There are four major items to consider when looking evaluating data warehouse solutions: user
interface, functionality, support, and infrastructure. All four items have a direct impact on user
acceptance, efficiency, and the quality of the solution. All three tasks require a significant

amount of knowledge and skill in both data warehouses solutions and information technology
solutions. The scope of work in this type of project is quite large and the expectations are very
high.

Data Services
Reviewing the Situation
We do not just specialize in warehouse solutions; the same analytical skills can be put to use
serving other business analysis requirements. We have been engaged to assist in back office
operations to manipulate huge quantities of data and present back to our clients in
predetermined formats to enable business managers pursue their strategic ambitions.
Our expertise extended to extraction of raw data from host systems and subsequent analysis
using database and spreadsheet techniques.
Twenty five years of handling data in the time critical solutions design arena, means that we turn
round data analysis highly efficiently in sectors of extreme diversity.

Modeling
Planning with confidence
We are often asked for accurate business solutions that reflect not only current and planned but
unknown situations. These situations call for visible and accurate representations of the working
environment. Often the Client's business requirements call for us to develop bespoke models if
we do not have any that can be adapted.
We have developed models that reflect:

Dock utilization in terms of shift balancing against dynamic pre-checked stock levels.
The effect of demand and stock cover on combined live storage media.
Graphic feedback on pick faces allocation according to product ABC characteristics.
Complete warehouse size and labor requirements depending on growth, SKU range,
seasonality, volume balancing over a national DC network.

Productivity
Increase Warehouse Productivity by Combating Slip page
Stable operations don't always indicate productive operations; in fact productivity creep often
occurs without being noticed. Other factors that affect productivity creep are the introduction of
new work streams, often at short notice as a reaction of either customer imposition or fear of lost
opportunities.

Means 2 offer a service of productivity improvement audits to try and help you see the wood for
the trees. Generally following "a day in the life" of your business through sales order receipt ~
purchase order ~ pick ~ dispatch. Depending on your needs we can offer flow process models
that will illustrate the key elements of primary tasks, highlighting any issues and likely ways of
combating them.
Typically these audits will consist of 1 - 2 days detailed interviews with staff followed by another
2 days formulating our report; a health checks in under a week...

Fig 1 (Packing Hall Current Warehouse)

Fig 2 (Packing Hall New Warehouse)

Fig 3 (Hanging Garments Warehouse)