Material Handling Equipment- Usage and Tips

Material handling as a component of supply chain management involves the movement, storage, protection and control of products from manufacturing to its disposal. Material handling incorporates a wide range of ergonomic material handling equipment and systems to support logistics and warehouse management. The tools of handling materials are available in various shapes and sizes, each serving for a specific purpose. They have different functions of transporting goods or temporarily storing them for shipment. Material handling equipment ensures the smooth and efficient functioning of the different processes of warehouse management.

Following are some tips pertaining to the usage of material handling equipment, that you can deploy to improve the efficiency of your business. Read on.

Right Tools for Right Job:

You may have a large fleet of material handling equipment in your warehouse but will not be effective until you do not have the correct tool for each stage of the process. Appropriate handling tools help in safe unloading, loading, and movement of materials. While storing the items on pallets, make sure that you have correct hand trucks or forklift attachments to move them. Workers often look for shortcut methods when it comes to material handling. So you need to make sure that at every stage of production the personnel is using correct tools.

Storage Facilities:

Proper arrangements should be made to store the materials prior to shipping or their usage in the manufacturing process. Arrangements made for material storage has a massive impact on the overall efficiency of the company. You can place the items of frequent use at the easiest points from where you can easily retrieve them. These practices allow the material equipment to be used in a productive manner. Make sure the plans for storing the products are systematic and are not simply placed wherever space is available.

Traffic management:

Forklifts, pallet jacks, cranes, and motorized pallet trucks are the vehicles of the warehouse and the lanes between the storage racks are the roads. Bad traffic management causes delays, traffic jams and sometimes may lead to accidents. It becomes essential to manage the traffic that may have a profound effect on the efficiency. Make sure that everyone in the facility understands and complies with the rules of traffic management.

Trained Operators:

To make productive use of material handling equipment, your employees need to know how to use them. Training should be given to all the workers to handle and use these equipment. If the operators are on leave then training given to employees to handle all types of tools ensures smooth working. Conducting mandatory workshops helps the workers to practice good material handling skills.

Maintenance Costs:

Irrespective of the perfect handling tools used in your warehouse, these equipment require to be maintained properly. You can also hire a professional to check the working of these tools on regular basis. Choose those equipments that can be replaced and repaired easily, minimizing the time lag that may arise due to the malfunctioning of the equipment.

Communicating with the people who actually work on the production floor provides with the suggestions and ideas to improve the processes for providing better efficiency.