UNEX space-saving storage solutions can help distribution and fulfillment centers better prepare for continued supply chain disruptions into the new year.While the pandemic has led to a prosperous eCommerce boom for many, it has also presented innumerable challenges that don't play nicely with handling a large influx of orders. For example, many companies in the business of serving eCommerce customers have seen:
- Increased costs
- Labor shortages + rising labor costs
- Adoption of new safety measures that lead to operational changes and delays
These impacts are being felt across all areas of the supply chain, from manufacturers, order fulfillment centers, and retail stores, all the way down to logistics providers delivering products to the end-consumer in the last mile.
How Is This Impacting Omnichannel Fulfillment?
Increasing Raw Material Costs
Costs of raw materials continue to increase with no signs of slowing. This increases the cost of production for the storage, picking, and packing equipment used by omnichannel fulfillment operations, driving up the costs of maintaining existing equipment and adding new equipment to keep up with increasing consumer demand.
Labor shortages mean you may not only be struggling to maintain the staff you have, but hiring more staff to handle an increase in orders from multiple channels is an even greater struggle. Hiring new staff at increased hourly wages is a new trend that is here to stay. This can be a tough pill to swallow, but something all omnichannel fulfillment operations face now and heading into the new year.
New Health And Safety Standards
Operational changes required to adhere to new health and safety regulations can cause continual disruptions in operations, exacerbating existing delays and presenting new challenges.
Supply Chain Leaders Can Overcome These Challenges!
If you have felt unprepared or underprepared during this time, there are some small changes you can make that will actually make a tremendous impact on the overall efficiency of your operation now and into 2022. UNEX has solutions to help you combat these challenges and offset increasing costs by leveraging the small changes that contribute to overall increased efficiency.
3 Space-Saving Solutions To Boost Operational Resilience in 2022
Discover three space-saving storage solutions that will boost resilience as supply chain disruption and uncertainty continues into the new year. By saving space, you save both time and money, all while improving your ability to grow.
1: SpeedCell Dynamic Storage
SpeedCell can compress 200’ of rack or shelving into 40’ of highly organized space. Increasing pick facings and boosting SKU density results in reduced travel times, faster picks, and less time spent restocking.
Measurable Improvements Made Possible With SpeedCell
- Increase storage density by 40-60%
- Reduce labor costs up to 40%
- Transform space into useable storage
- Add more SKUs in less space
- Create a highly efficient and accurate pick
SpeedCell Performance Specs
- Designs from 1-3 rows deep, up to 12 columns wide (144” wide bays)
- Ergonomically designed
- Operating temperature of -20° to 180°F (-29° to 82°C)
- Resistant to fire/flame and mold
- Storage Capacity – cell: up to 35 lbs; column: up to 240 lbs
2: SpanTrack Carton Flow Rollers and Wheel Beds
SpanTrack Carton Flow Solution Key Features
- Add to any new or existing pallet rack—no shelves or intermediate support required
- Store products with a wide variation in size and weight
- Strong and sturdy solution that’s dependable in the most active warehouses and assembly plants
- Eliminate hang-ups with 300% more product contact than plastic wheel rails
SpanTrack Design Details
- Drop-in design for easy installation
- Freezer/cooler rated to below zero
- Light, standard, and heavy-duty options
- Knuckled end treatment for improved ergonomic each picks
- Customizable end treatments that attach easily to any pallet rack setup
- Interior notching to save vertical space
3: FlowCell Modular Flow Racks
FlowCell provides a flexible, ergonomic flow solution that adheres to Lean principles. Modular flow racks efficiently organize your inventory, accelerate pick productivity, and reduce wasted space.
Key Performance Improvements
- Increase space utilization by up to 50%
- Boost production efficiency by up to 30%
- Minimize reaching and improve ergonomics by reducing injury and fatigue
- Create reconfigurable, flexible storage to accommodate line and process changes
- Ensure FIFO inventory rotation
- Keep your operations organized — boxes can be stored in return lanes rather than on the floor
How FlowCell Provides Ultimate Flexibility
- Reconfigurable, adjustable units for each unique operation
- Clean, organized sightlines
- Engineered to angle parts toward the picker
- Heavy gauge steel construction
- Quick assembly (under 1 hour)
When HelloFresh Needed Scalable Efficiency, UNEX Delivered
FlowCell has been proven to help transform fulfillment assembly, kitting, and packing processes to boost efficiency, especially for high-volume operations with frequent changes.
One example is HelloFresh, a meal-kit company that enables its subscribers to choose from a robust selection of meal options each week. Offering so many options to its customers meant HelloFresh needed maximum flexibility for scaling up orders while maintaining fulfillment precision.
Being able to add more meal-kitting lines as they grew was a crucial factor, so UNEX went to the drawing board to create a reconfigurable and adjustable carton flow solution. UNEX tested different roller types, rails, and heights to configure a custom FlowCell modular flow rack perfectly tailored to HelloFresh’s unique needs.
What Was The Result For HelloFresh?
- Lines were increased from 18 to 28—in the same amount of floor space!
- New empty box return lines enable replenishers to easily collect them
- Reduced worker fatigue and injury risk by reducing the need to reach over to pick
Want to read the full case study? Download it HERE to learn more about how customized carton flow racks empower rapidly scaling companies like HelloFresh to adapt to consumer demands quickly and efficiently in a rapidly-evolving eCommerce environment.
UNEX Space-Saving Solutions Transform Every Area of the Supply Chain
Applications Well-Suited To Dynamic Storage Solutions
- Distribution and fulfillment warehouses
- 3PL warehouses
- Micro-fulfillment centers
- Retail backrooms
- In-store customer pickup areas
Whether you need to fit more inventory into less space, more fulfillment system flexibility, or the ability to scale rapidly without loss of accuracy, UNEX has dynamic storage solutions that can be designed specifically for your unique fulfillment needs. Reach out to the space optimization experts at UNEX to learn more about how we help you better leverage your existing space.