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Ask a Space Optimization Specialist: Roller or Wheel?

Dear Pickologists,

I'm a distributor of home improvement products. I need a carton flow solution to cut pick times down, but I'm not sure whether I need rollers or wheels. Which would you recommend for me? -Bill F.

Roller or wheel is one of the most common questions we receive when working with end users. Bringing down pick times in Bill's distribution center could be easily accomplished by installing either roller or wheel Span-Track into his existing rack structures. But are they equally valuable for Bill and his application?

The short answer is no. As Bill mentions above, his distribution center services home improvement stores- think Lowe's or Home Depot. Walking through these stores in December will not result in the same experience as walking through in July- the season has a major influence on what the store is carrying, and how much of a specific SKU they carry. In Bill's case, he needs a solution that is optimal for both Christmas lights and Tiki torches.

As an expert Pickologist, I would recommend that Bill get his hands on Span-Track wheel beds. Wheel bed allows you to use up to 90% of the shelf space from left to right, and when installed consecutively creates a full level of undedicated lanes of carton flow. This means you can store a carton nine inches wide or nineteen inches wide in the same space, depending on your needs. Wheel beds allow you to reslot without removing or replacing the tracks- in the same situation, you would need to replace your Span-Track roller lanes to accommodate the larger carton. This solution is ideal for Bill, as changing or replacing his SKUs would not require more time than it takes to get the new item on the shelf. Because his product offering will change from season to season, Bill needs as much flexibility as possible- and that's our wheel bed's forte.

Always remember that your operation is unique from Bill's, even when facing the same challenges. That's why our Pickologists are at the ready to take your specific needs and develop a customized solution that addresses each and every one. You can contact our expert Pickologists with any question or concern you may have. And hey- who knows? Maybe you'll make it to our "Ask a Pickologist" section!