With numerous changes in technology over the past century, one must wonder what the future will look like in operational warehousing. Many Health Care facilities have now accepted the concept of warehousing as a means of reducing annual costs through large inventory purchasing levels.
But to launch a successful warehouse facility today, there must be some forethought as to what critical demands will be placed on that facility in the future and whether current design will meet those demands. Sustainability requires a realistic view that is driven by square footage cost – too much space initially represents extra cost, too little space represents costly future modifications and production downtime. Not developing and acquiring the right automation based on functional requirements increases FTEs in annual operations.
Building it right the first time must be the key to a successful venture. One thing is certain: as technology expands future software, equipment, and means of controlling inventory accurately will be developed. We need to design for the future, allowing for growth.
There are many overarching themes that are pushing for more automation within your facility’s four-walls. Some relate to the changing labor force, yet others to consumer demands for shopping today and receiving tomorrow (e-commerce). If you add in other arenas that use the warehouse storage concept (industrial / commercial / health care marketplace), each facility has its own unique demands in receiving, storage, processing, and distribution that makes the warehouse unique. Many leading warehouse automation solutions providers only look to sell equipment as outlined in the bid. They do not look at functionality or potential future growth. Their method allows them to sell more equipment to the client later, thus guaranteeing future sales.
RemTecH Associates LLC, in conjunction with individual end-user and primary architect, looks at the big picture to determine the initial functional criteria that meet the final design requirements. Labor is an essential component in the warehouse. No matter how automated the operation, there is still a need for the human element. The question is – how much is needed and where do you draw the line when it comes to wages, training, injuries, and reduced productivity. It is a balance that we review to ensure proper design is offered through your architect.
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