Effective warehouse management is not only measured by an accurate inventory management system. As a matter of fact, effective warehouse racking system also plays a vital role in the warehouse procedures and processes.
Warehouse racking, most commonly known as pallet racking, is an efficient and cost-effective system which can either make or break warehouse operations. If properly employed and utilized, such industrial racking can increase the warehouse’s storage density which will eventually lead to an organized flow of product; hence, an over-all increase profit.
What is Racking?
Basically, racking is formed with using different metal structures composed of heavy steel frames and connectors to support substantial materials or products in storage.
Stored products are usually arranged in horizontal rows under various levels. Also, forklift trucks are primarily employed in loading pallets into the racks for storekeeping.
Quality of materials and assembling skills are required in setting up a warehouse rack. Superior pallet racking foundation should be given utmost care and attention as it deals not only with the welfare of the stored products but also with the lives of the workers.
There are various ways to effectively assemble a racking structure, such as clipping, bolting, welding, or possible combinations between them.
Check out this video for a glimpse on how pallet racking is being assembled.
Different System of Warehouse Racking
Every warehouse infrastructure requires a specific pallet racking system depending on the product to be stored and the space availability of the warehouse itself.
Here are some of the essential racking system you may choose from:
- Selective warehouse rack
This is the most common racking system used today. It can either be manufactured in a clip-in configuration manner or in a structural bolt-together.
Either ways this system is ideal for deep-reach, standard, or slim aisle racking system as it provides easy and quick access from the aisle.
As common with all pallet racking system, selective warehouse rack requires forklift trucks for an easy product organization flow.
- Drive-in and drive-thru racks
These rack configurations are best suited for high-density storage. Constructed primarily using steel, they allow forklift trucks to directly access the lane of stacked rows – or the bay.
On one hand, drive-in rack employs a common entry and exit for the forklifts. In other words, the last forklifts to enter the common entrance should also be the first one to exit– last in first out (LIFO) process.
On the other, drive-thru rack uses two different entry points. Hence, the use of the first in, first out (FIFO) method.
The former is suited for non-perishable goods. While the latter for materials with shelf life concerns.
- Push-back pallet rack
This method is commonly used for bulk storage. Basically, it pushes the pallet back for loading and forth for unloading. Like drive-in, it also utilizes the last in first out (LIFO) system using inclined and sliding carts.
To get more ideas on what racking system suits your warehouse, read this article on general requirements for storage.
Importance of Warehouse Racking
Indeed, a planned and organized warehouse system ultimately saves your workhouse significant space. It provides storage and retrieval convenience to enhance the over-all warehouse efficiency.
Most importantly, not only will industrial racking improve efficient inventory management, but also it will ensure the occupational safety of the workers.