Will You Outgrow Your Warehouse Space?

Will You Outgrow Your Warehouse Space?

Are you considering relocating to a larger warehouse space? If you’ve outgrown your warehouse, understanding the limitations of the new warehouse space will give you a better idea as to whether or not you will outgrow the space as your business expands.

Will You Outgrow Your Warehouse Space?

Follow this step-by-step formula to calculate the available warehouse storage area in square footage.

Step #1 – Measure the Floor Space

Multiply the length by the width of the warehouse space in feet. For this case, we’ll say the result is 75,000 sq. ft. of warehousing.

Step #2 – Calculate the Non-storage Space

Calculate the non-storage spaces, such as breakrooms, restrooms, offices, and loading bays. For this exercise, we’ll assume it’s 15,000 sq. ft.

Step #3 – Remove the Non-Storage Space from the Total Warehouse Space

Usable Warehouse Space = Total Square footage – Non-Storage Space sq. Ft.

  • Ex. 75,000 Sq. Ft. – 15,000 Sq. Ft. = 60,000 Sq. Ft.

Step #4 – Determine Your Ground-Up Storage

Warehouses are 3D spaces, so you can stack inventory to the roof if it allows for it. The stack height from the ceiling determines the final measurement for the exercise.

To know how high you can stack pallets, you’ll need to consider the lowest-hanging fixtures in the warehouse, such as lighting. Let’s assume the stack height is 15 feet.

Step #5 – Multiple the Usable Space by the Stack Height

Warehouse capacity = Usable warehouse space in Sq. Ft. * Max Stack Height in Feet.

So, our example would look as follows.

  • 60,000 sq. Ft. x 15 Ft. = 900,000 Cubic Feet

This example shows you your current warehouse potential. From there, it’s easy to match the warehouse volume with sales forecasts to determine when you expect to run out of storage space at your facility. You’ll also need to consider factors like picking and packing work areas.

Tips for Increasing Warehouse Capacity

Eventually, every growing company runs out of warehouse space. What can you do to improve your storage without moving premises? Preparing expansion plans for high growth can help you stay ahead of the problem.

Companies must forecast seasonal demand in order to determine the warehouse space they need to satisfy those orders.

To maximize warehouse space for seasonal demand, asses your current warehousing strategy and look for ways to improve it. Ask yourself these questions to evaluate your current warehousing conditions.

  • Are you using your space optimally?
  • Can you save space using double-depth racks?
  • Are there racking systems that can improve your warehousing strategy?
  • Can you adjust the aisle width to accommodate more space without compromising safety standards?
  • Can you combine shipping and receiving areas to accommodate more storage?
  • Can you change your packaging to create more storage space?
  • Are you using automation to improve your warehousing strategy?

Warehouse Slotting

Warehouse slotting is a process used to increase storage capacity. Slotting maximizes space by storing inventory based on SKU codes as well as the type and characteristics of the products you hold. Essentially, you’re packing items as closely as possible to maximize products being held in racking and storage areas.

Slotting requires warehouse managers to group popular items together to reduce the number of steps taken from receiving the order to pickling, packing, and shipping it to the customer.

Efficient and effective slotting strategies improve available space in the warehouse while improving operations, minimizing wastage of resources, and reducing costs. A slotting project takes time and effort to plan and implement, but it’s worth it when you consider the storage and cost advantages.

Maximizing warehouse space by consolidating or reorganizing warehouse aspects are usually short-term solutions. Eventually, you’re going to need to search for a larger facility to keep your business growing.

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