Do you want to make your warehouse more efficient in 2024? If so, you are not alone. Warehouse efficiency is a key factor that determines the success of any business that involves storing, moving, and delivering goods. However, achieving warehouse efficiency is not an easy task, especially in the face of changing customer demands, market trends, and technological innovations. In this article, we will explore some of the best practices and strategies that can help you make your warehouse more efficient in 2024 and beyond, such as using pallet dispensers and loaders, dividing your warehouse into zones, optimizing your supply chain operations, and more. Read on to find out how you can lower your costs, increase your profits, and satisfy your customers with a well-organized and optimized warehouse.

1. Divide Your Warehouse into Zones

A great way to improve warehouse efficiency is to divide your warehouse into zones based on the type, size, and frequency of the products that you store and move. Zoning your warehouse can help you optimize the layout, flow, and accessibility of your inventory, as well as reduce travel time and distance for your workers and equipment. For example, you can create zones for fast-moving, slow-moving, bulky, fragile, or seasonal products, and assign them to different locations, shelves, or bins in your warehouse. You can also create zones for different functions, such as receiving, picking, packing, shipping, or returns, and arrange them in a logical and sequential order.

2. Implement Pallet Dispensers and Loaders

A pallet dispenser is a device that automatically stacks and dispenses pallets, eliminating the need for manual handling and storage. A pallet dispenser can work in conjunction with a pallet loader, which is a device that automatically loads and unloads pallets onto and from trucks, trailers, or conveyors. By using a pallet dispenser and a pallet loader, you can improve the efficiency, safety, and ergonomics of your warehouse operations. According to research conducted by Yarbrough Industries, a pallet dispenser can save up to 900 minutes of total labor per day, compared to a manual pallet stacking and dispensing system. This translates to a significant reduction in labor and transportation costs, as well as an increase in productivity and profitability. Therefore, a pallet dispenser is an important and valuable asset for any warehouse that deals with a large volume of pallets. If you are looking for a reliable and cost-effective pallet dispenser for your warehouse, you might want to check out our website. We have a wide range of pallet dispensers that can meet your specific needs and preferences. You can also contact us for a free consultation and quote, and we will be happy to help you find the best solution for your warehouse.

Pallet Dispenser

 

Pallet loaders are devices that automatically load and unload pallets onto and from trucks, trailers, or conveyors, reducing labor and transportation costs. By implementing pallet dispensers and loaders, you can save space, time, and money, as well as improve safety and ergonomics in your warehouse.

 

3. Optimize Your Supply Chain Operations

Your warehouse efficiency is not only affected by what happens inside your warehouse, but also by what happens outside your warehouse, such as your suppliers, customers, and carriers. Therefore, it is important to optimize your supply chain operations and ensure that they are aligned with your warehouse goals and capabilities. For example, you can negotiate better terms and prices with your suppliers, streamline your ordering and replenishment processes, monitor and track your inventory levels and movements, communicate and collaborate with your customers and carriers, and leverage data and analytics to identify and resolve any issues or bottlenecks in your supply chain.

4. Adopt the FIFO Inventory Method

The FIFO (first-in, first-out) inventory method is a simple and effective way to manage your inventory and ensure that your products are fresh and up-to-date. The FIFO method means that the products that are received first are also sold or shipped first, and the products that are received last are sold or shipped last. This way, you can avoid having expired, damaged, or obsolete products in your warehouse, as well as reduce inventory holding costs and waste. The FIFO method is especially suitable for perishable, seasonal, or trendy products, or products that have a limited shelf life or warranty period.

 

5. Use Digital Picklists and Barcode Scanning

One of the most critical and labor-intensive processes in a warehouse is picking, which involves locating and retrieving the products that are needed for an order. Picking can be made faster and easier by using digital picklists and barcode scanning. Digital picklists are electronic lists that display the products, quantities, and locations that are required for an order, and can be accessed through handheld devices, such as tablets or smartphones. Barcode scanning is a technology that uses optical scanners to read and capture the information that is encoded in barcodes, such as product names, SKUs, or serial numbers. By using digital picklists and barcode scanning, you can eliminate paper-based lists and manual data entry, as well as reduce errors, mistakes, and misplacements in your picking process.

6. Invest in Warehouse Management Software

Warehouse management software (WMS) is a software application that helps you plan, control, and optimize the operations and resources in your warehouse. WMS can provide you with various features and functions, such as inventory management, order management, warehouse layout design, labor management, performance measurement, reporting, and integration with other systems, such as ERP, CRM, or TMS. By investing in WMS, you can automate and streamline your warehouse processes, increase your visibility and accuracy, enhance your decision making and problem solving, and improve your customer service and satisfaction.

7. Offer Incentive Pay to Your Workers

Your workers are the backbone of your warehouse, and their motivation, engagement, and productivity can have a significant impact on your warehouse efficiency. One of the ways to motivate and reward your workers is to offer them incentive pay, which is a form of compensation that is based on their performance, output, or results, rather than their hours, seniority, or qualifications. Incentive pay can take various forms, such as bonuses, commissions, profit sharing, or stock options. By offering incentive pay to your workers, you can encourage them to work harder, faster, and smarter, as well as increase their loyalty, retention, and satisfaction.

Man welding metal

 

 

8. Provide Fast Shipping Options to Your Customers

In today’s competitive and dynamic market, customers expect fast and reliable delivery of their orders, and are willing to pay more or switch to another vendor if their expectations are not met. Therefore, it is essential to provide fast shipping options to your customers, such as same-day, next-day, or two-day delivery, and ensure that you can fulfill them consistently and accurately. By providing fast shipping options to your customers, you can increase your sales, revenue, and market share, as well as improve your customer loyalty, retention, and referrals.

9. Organize Your Warehouse Regularly

One of the simplest and most effective ways to improve warehouse efficiency is to organize your warehouse regularly and keep it clean and tidy. Organizing your warehouse means that you arrange your products, equipment, and materials in a logical and orderly manner, and label them clearly and correctly. Organizing your warehouse also means that you remove any clutter, debris, or unnecessary items that may obstruct your workflow, space, or safety. By organizing your warehouse regularly, you can improve your inventory accuracy, accessibility, and visibility, as well as reduce your risk of accidents, injuries, or damages.

10. Apply the ABC Analysis Method to Your Inventory

The ABC analysis method is a technique that helps you classify your inventory into three categories based on their value, importance, or frequency, and allocate your resources and attention accordingly. The three categories are:

  • A: The most valuable, important, or frequent products that account for a large percentage of your sales, revenue, or profit, but a small percentage of your inventory. These products should be given the highest priority and attention, and stored in the most accessible and secure locations in your warehouse.
  • B: The moderately valuable, important, or frequent products that account for a moderate percentage of your sales, revenue, or profit, and a moderate percentage of your inventory. These products should be given a medium priority and attention, and stored in the less accessible and secure locations in your warehouse.
  • C: The least valuable, important, or frequent products that account for a small percentage of your sales, revenue, or profit, but a large percentage of your inventory. These products should be given the lowest priority and attention, and stored in the most remote and least secure locations in your warehouse.

By applying the ABC analysis method to your inventory, you can optimize your inventory management, reduce your inventory costs, and increase your inventory turnover.

11. Use High-Quality Equipment and Tools

The quality of your equipment and tools can affect your warehouse efficiency, as well as your safety and reliability. Therefore, it is important to use high-quality equipment and tools that are suitable for your warehouse needs and operations, and maintain them regularly and properly. For example, you should use high-quality forklifts, pallet jacks, conveyors, racks, shelves, bins, carts, scanners, printers, and software, and ensure that they are in good working condition and updated with the latest features and functions. By using high-quality equipment and tools, you can improve your speed, accuracy, and productivity, as well as reduce your downtime, repairs, and replacements.

Using pallet jack

 

Conclusion

The quality of your equipment and tools can affect your warehouse efficiency, as well as your safety and reliability. Therefore, it is important to use high-quality equipment and tools that are suitable for your warehouse needs and operations, and maintain them regularly and properly. For example, you should use high-quality forklifts, pallet jacks, conveyors, racks, shelves, bins, carts, scanners, printers, and software, and ensure that they are in good working condition and updated with the latest features and functions. By using high-quality equipment and tools, you can improve your speed, accuracy, and productivity, as well as reduce your downtime, repairs, and replacements.

 

Ready to talk to a warehouse efficiency expert?

Pallet stacking and management are a significant challenge for businesses that rely on them for storage and transportation. When stacked improperly, pallets can pose a safety hazard and damage the products they carry. Inefficient pallet management can also lead to reduced productivity.

What’s the solution? Well, we’ve invented one. The Pal-O-Matic is an all-in-one saving grace for all those warehouse pain points.

DSC 2728

For any piece of large equipment or heavy machinery needed for warehouse operations, there is always a cost to consider. In business, there is no better investment than one that provides an overall solution to endless frustrations. From the ground up, we designed our unique pallet dispenser to be the sound capital investment you are looking for. Here is how the Pal-O-Matic can offer a substantial return on investment

Improved Efficiency 

With a centralized location for pallets, workers spend less time retrieving them, increasing efficiency. In a time study by one of our Yarbrough Industries’ customers, the Pal-O-Matic saved up to 4.7 hours for every 1,000 pallets versus not using an automated dispenser.

DSC 2690

Saved Storage Space

An automated pallet dispenser provides an organized, central location for the pallets and saves significant floor space. The Model 9000 pallet dispenser from Yarbrough Industries holds 90 pallets while only occupying 72 square feet of floor space. If you stacked the same number of pallets in 4-foot stacks around your warehouse, the stacks would take up more than twice the square foot area on the floor.

Saved storage space

Reduced Pallet Damage

The Pal-O-Matic neatly stacks and organizes pallets, significantly reducing the chance of damage. The metal walls also contain the pallets so that a jack can enter without the pallets pushing away. This eliminates damage to building columns and rack legs, which are costly to repair.

DSC 2645

Built to Last

What else do large equipment and heavy machinery have in common besides investment costs? The inevitable repair process. Fear not; we have already factored that in for you. We provide technical and part support and commercial equipment repair for our pallet dispensers long after the sale. With proper maintenance, we anticipate a 12+ year life from our machines even when they are used for multiple daily shifts. Some of our customers have been using the same machine for over 15 years!

Built to last

Going Beyond Wood

Did we mention it’s not just for wood pallets? Our Pal-O-Matic’s safe stacking and storage systems are versatile and can dispense a variety of pallet types, including wood, plastic, aluminum, metal, export, and rental pallets. They are perfect for palletizing lines, robotic work cells, pallet sorting areas, order picking, and selecting.

Say goodbye to the aches and pains of manual pallet handling with our innovative Pal-O-Matic machine. Or, as we like to call it, your all-in-one warehouse pallet solution. Upgrade your operations with our automatic pallet dispensing systems and enjoy the benefits of improved safety and efficiency in your warehouse.

If you are interested in a pallet dispenser to benefit the success of your business, just let us know. We can’t wait to work with you!

When you own a business, it’s imperative that you do everything you can to ensure it remains profitable. In many cases, installing equipment such as a pallet dispenser can help you do exactly that. However, many people who run warehouses and manufacturing facilities that make use of pallets don’t know of the benefits that they can derive from utilizing pallet dispensers. Since they don’t realize the financial benefits, they don’t think investing in them is a good idea. The truth is, something as simple as installing a pallet dispenser is almost guaranteed to increase profitability in your facility. Some of the ways you might see a financial impact are:

Reduced Damage to the Pallets

When you have to keep replacing damaged pallets, it can really start to eat away at your profit margins. Everything deteriorates over time and pallets are no different. When they are used regularly or used to lift items that are too heavy, it can cause damage sooner than typical wear and tear. Most of the time, breakage occurs when the pallets are being accessed for the first time in order to be used. Installing a pallet dispenser is effective in reducing such damage since it makes access to the pallets a lot easier.

Storing pallets incorrectly often leads to damage as well, so it’s also important to note that pallet dispensers also function as storage facilities. This means that when you put the pallets in them, you are unlikely to end up having to deal with issues such as the pallets being damaged due to improper storage. They are usually stacked in an orderly manner within the dispensers, which reduces the risk of damage.

Increased Efficiency

Time is money and pallet dispensers are proof of that. By installing pallet dispensers, you immediately reduce the amount of time it takes to find and use a pallet in your warehouse or facility. Obviously, depending on the type of system you used previously, this improvement may end up reducing the amount of time needed to do this drastically. Even if it doesn’t seem like much, when added up, it will translate to a lot of time saved. The cumulative effect is that the entire facility will operate more efficiently, which always ends with more profits. This is especially so when you are dealing with time-sensitive businesses, such as the movement of perishable goods.

Reduced Risk of Injury

Workplace injuries are commonly associated with pallets. When the process of picking up the pallets is not done in an orderly manner, it can easily lead to staff members sustaining injuries of various kinds. When you have a pallet dispenser, this concern can be alleviated considerably. By ensuring that all the pallets are in a central position, you create a more orderly, and easier way to retrieve them. You will therefore not have to spend money and time on the medical issues that arise from accidents in such a setting.

It’s obvious that there are a lot of financial benefits to using a pallet dispenser in such a setting. However, it’s important to note that the benefit you can reap from the products depends on a number of factors including:

  • The quality of your pallet dispensers: If you want to get the most out of the devices, always make sure that you insist on buying high-quality ones. These might cost you a bit more than the regular ones, but they will last longer and sometimes be more practical, which more than makes up for this. Besides, careful shopping will allow you to identify high-quality dispensers that are not that much more expensive than the regular ones, which means that you will get a lot more value for money from them and they will last you for years into the future.
  • Proper installation: One of the factors that will influence the performance of the pallet dispenser is how you install it. Make sure that you always consult a professional in doing this, so that the risk of making installation errors is minimized. Even better still, you could opt to have the vendor do the installation. This way, in case of any problems, you can simply refer to your warranty to have the repairs done if it’s allowed.

In summary, if you run a facility such as a warehouse in manufacturing or distribution, where you use such pallets widely, installing the dispenser is likely to be a very good idea. It helps you streamline the operations of the facility, and ensures that you do get very good value for money from the decision. The best thing about them is that once installed, you will rarely have to spend a lot of money on them.

Yarbrough Industries Pal-O-Matic Automatic Pallet Dispenser is one of the best on the market. It automatically dispenses and holds pallets captive for easy retrieval with a pallet jack and it is made with the sturdiest materials. If you are interested in seeing how a Pal-O-Matic Pallet Dispenser could impact your facility’s production,

Get direct access to industry-leading content

This industry moves fast, but you can move even faster if you’re up to date on trends, technical developments, and best practices. The Yarbrough Industries blog is a go-to source for valuable, timely and detailed information. Sign up to ensure that you don’t miss a single post.

Whether you are in a warehouse, distribution center, or other manufacturing facilities, it is inevitable that you will have pallets for material handling or storing equipment. Although they are generally user-friendly and simple, improper stacking of materials can bring troubles and unforeseen accidents. These might include worker injuries, product damages or property destruction. There are some simple rules that should be followed while stacking pallets. These are also imperative in order for your company to be in compliance with the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA), although this is not a complete list. 

Pallet Stacking: A Quick Guide

Stacking pallets properly not only saves space but also helps eliminate tripping and collision hazards. It helps with organization efficiency as it can also help categorize your goods. By organizing effectively, you, in turn, ease the material storage and transportation activities. 

Stacking pallets carelessly or overly high can lead to collapse, causing injuries or death to those in their vicinity. Here are several measures that can enhance safety and efficiency when it comes to stacking pallets.

  • Ensure that the pallets are durable enough to carry the loads required. It is also important that the pallets are undamaged. 
  • Never stack products with sharp corners or edges on pallets in a way that they could injure people coming near them.
  • Tie any boxed items securely. This can be done with cross-ties or shrink plastic fiber. 
  • Metal pallets should be stored in a clean place and have no protruding nails, holes, splinters, or loose boards.
  • Position your pallets securely to avoid collapsing or sliding when stacking goods on them.
  • Avoid keeping stacked pallets in high-traffic areas.
  • You can stack pallets up to 15 feet high. However, regulations vary based on the type of goods you store on them. 
  • Always stack product on both sides of the pallet. Even distribution is critical for material handling and safety. 
  • If you must stack different products, always stack similar items with uniform size and shape together. 
  • Never overstack a pallet, even if it seems as though there is still room for stacking at its rated capacity. 
  • Always stack the heaviest load at the bottom of the pallet.
  • Maintain sufficient clearance around stacks. This ensures safe handling and easy access.
  • Provide ergonomics training and task-specific training to ensure proper stacking, and utilize a pallet dispenser if available.
  • Never stack goods where they obstruct lighting, electrical panels, or ventilation.
  • It is not advisable to manually lift heavily stacked pallets per OSHA regulations, instead, use a forklift or automated pallet dispenser for lifting.

There are more safety practices that have been formulated by OSHA, and following these practices, as basic as they are, helps prevent damage to life and property. 

If you are interested in learning more about saving your company time and money through safer pallet procedures, please contact Yarbrough Industries today. 

Get direct access to industry-leading content

This industry moves fast, but you can move even faster if you’re up to date on trends, technical developments, and best practices. The Yarbrough Industries blog is a go-to source for valuable, timely and detailed information. Sign up to ensure that you don’t miss a single post.

Many people ask how a pallet dispenser would benefit their industry or organization. Because of the versatile industries, Yarbrough works with, we have put together a few reasons anyone can benefit from purchasing a pallet dispenser.

1. Streamlined Productivity

Enhancing a high-production work environment can be as simple as having all of your machines and products in the right place. With high-quality pallet dispensers from Yarbrough Industries, you are able to integrate your product lines without skipping a beat. Each Pal-O-Matic Pallet dispenser is custom-made for industrial applications, giving you the opportunity to allocate time and resources toward other critical production areas while knowing your pallets will be where they need to be.

Some productivity benefits of pallet dispensers include:

  1. Elimination of manual pallet handling

  2. Reduction of employee injuries due to removal of manual pallet handling

  3. Increased production while minimizing time and labor involvement

  4. Minimal floor space used for storage and staging for pallet stacks

  5. Minimal pallet damage

  6. Stand-alone models offer simple stacking and dispensing

 

2. Seamless Integration

At Yarbrough Industries, every solution we offer you is geared toward improving workflow for smooth, efficient product integration. We recognize how difficult it can be to find technology that simultaneously keeps operating costs at a manageable price while also increasing productivity. 

  1. Problematic labor replacement, including the elimination of repetitive motion risks while allowing stacking of square and stable loads to full height to minimize freight costs.

  2. Compact, mobile footprint fits into existing tight spaces, typically taking up only as much or on occasion, less space as what you are already using for manual palletizing.

  3. Modular flexibility to dramatically minimize hassle and ensure optimal time for customer projects.

  4. Financial incentives are realized in as little as one year. Having a pallet dispenser can dramatically lower certain costs for 1-shift, 2-shift, and 3-shift operations.

 

3. Increased Production

One of the hardest parts of improving the performance of your facility is finding the right technology to fit your space, budget, and production requirements. With Pal-O-Matic Pallet Dispensers, you’ll be able to perform at an exceedingly high level without disrupting the area you operate in while staying within budget. Replacing cost-increasing inefficient manual labor with the Pal-O-Matic Pallet Dispenser makes work easier and safer while letting you keep more of your money—It is our job at Yarbrough Industries to continually find exciting ways to make your production easier. With our high-quality automated pallet dispenser, we’ve done just that.

Contact us to find out how we can make things simpler for your facility.

Get direct access to industry-leading content

This industry moves fast, but you can move even faster if you’re up to date on trends, technical developments, and best practices. The Yarbrough Industries blog is a go-to source for valuable, timely and detailed information. Sign up to ensure that you don’t miss a single post.

What is a Pal-o-Matic Pallet Dispenser?

Pallet dispensers replace manual handling of pallets to streamline automated and manual material handling systems.  A pallet dispenser holds a number of pallets, often up to 45, and provides pallets one by one for easy retrieval at floor level by an electric pallet jack, manual pallet jack, or forklift.

Having a good pallet dispenser is an integral part of an efficient manual or semi-automatic palletizing system ensuring a pallet is always ready for your team to place products.

Yarbrough’s Pal-O-Matic pallet dispensers reduce labor and improve productivity for your company.  Our pallet dispensers can be used alongside semi-automated palletizing, order pick systems, and low cycle store/dispense processes.  The Pal-O-Matic can be configured to integrate with existing equipment. 

Once you have invested in a Yarbrough’s Pal-O-Matic pallet dispenser you can expect it to last many years and be very reliable while requiring minimal maintenance.

Who Needs a Pallet Dispenser?

Industries such as medical supply, cosmetics, pharmaceutical, food processing, grocery warehouse, chemical processing, auto parts distribution, material handling, paper and consumer products distribution can all benefit from an automated pallet handling system.

The Pal-O-Matic dispensers will work with most types of pallets, including stringer style, white wood, block style, slave boards, plastic, metal, as well as custom shipping skids.

How Does a Pallet Dispenser Work?

Pallet dispensers are loaded with a forklift. A pallet jack, hand truck or forklift can then access the front of the dispenser and retrieve one or two pallets at floor level. The machine then quickly places another pallet on the floor.

What are the Benefits of a Pal-O-Matic Pallet Dispenser?

There are numerous ways a Pal-O-Matic Pallet Dispenser can benefit your company.

  1.  Effective Use of Time: Your order pickers will spend less time retrieving
    pallets, up to 4.7 hours saved for every 1000 pallets*.
  2. Using Space Efficiently: Our Model 4500 will hold 45 pallets and occupies only 40 sq ft of valuable floor space. The same number of pallets in 4 ft tall stacks
    scattered around your warehouse takes more than twice that area.
  3. Reduce Pallet Damage: During the typical manual retrieval, pallets are thrown and stacks are toppled. Pal-O-Matic ensures that no longer happens, saving time and money for your company. Also, the pallets
    are contained so the jack can enter without the pallets pushing away. This
    eliminates damage to building columns and rack legs.
  4. Improves Safety for Employees: An “overexertion” injury, typical from lifting a heavy or
    bulky object, can easily cost $50,000 in medical expenses and lost time. If
    manual lifting of pallets is eliminated from your employees’ duties, you make
    their job easier and have a high probability of preventing a painful and
    expensive injury. Lifting pallets is often the most difficult part of an order
    picker’s job, so eliminating it can increase your hiring options.
  5. Improves Morale: When the order pickers realize that our automated pallet dispenser makes their job easier, they feel recognized and appreciated. This, of course, leads to improved productivity!

How Long Does a Pallet Dispenser Last?

With proper maintenance, you can anticipate a 12+ year life from our machines even in heavy service of 2 or 3 shifts per day. It is
not unusual for us to hear from customers that have been using our
machines for 15, 20, or even 25 years. We provide technical and parts
support long after the sale.

Contact us at (877)869-5344  with any questions.
*information from a time study provided by one of our customers comparing
pallet retrieval times with and without an automated dispenser

Get direct access to industry-leading content

This industry moves fast, but you can move even faster if you’re up to date on trends, technical developments, and best practices. The Yarbrough Industries blog is a go-to source for valuable, timely and detailed information. Sign up to ensure that you don’t miss a single post.