An improved workflow, a more productive workforce and fewer obstructions are all possible with the help of organisation. Organising the tools you work with, the tasks you need to do for the day, as well as the parts you need daily can be extremely beneficial to your productivity. But I’m not just talking about work-related benefits – there are many more benefits you get from staying organised. An organised workspace, in any sense of the word, can also help you sleep better and it can work as a stress reliever. Since everything is in place, you don’t have to fret about losing things or trying to find them for hours.
This can help increase “me time”, which in turn helps make for a healthier lifestyle. It’s a snowball effect that once started, can’t be stopped easily. And there is no reason to stop such a quality-of-life improvement, really. When it comes to your warehouse, though, it can take a little bit more effort, and just as you would utilise pallet racking you should also consider using spare part trays for better organisation. But how do you implement them so that they work well?
How Do You Develop a Spare Parts Stocking Strategy?
The most fundamental rule when implementing spare parts bins is to try and make the most out of your available vertical space. By utilising vertical space with parts bins you avoid cluttering your work area, which can greatly improve your productivity and organisation. This also allows you to store more items and helps you use space wisely.
Even if the items you’re storing are not that heavy, make sure that the heaviest items are always near the floor. This doesn’t just make things more convenient, since you don’t have to carry down heavy stuff, but it also makes it a lot safer. This way, you increase the stability of the shelving by keeping its centre of gravity low.
Fast Moving Items
If you have parts that are being moved fast due to an increase in demand or because of any other reason, you should have them at arm’s reach. These parts or items need to be as accessible as possible since they are the ones being used or sold out the most.
It’s not just about the parts bins. Something that can help in making your workplace feel more organised in conjunction with spare parts bins is proper lighting. You don’t need to have showroom-level lighting, but the better the lighting, the easier it is to identify and find parts and items.
BOMs & CMMS
It’s not all about keeping trays and the items in them well-organised. You also need to keep up with time and have a well designer CMMS. A computer maintenance management system, as it’s also known, is used to keep BOMs organised. A BOM is a listing in which the parts you have are maintained through the CMMS. Keeping a digital listing of all the parts you have will make it a lot easier to store them since there will be no space to store all those paper listings.
You can try and implement a methodology by which you will sort all your items/parts. This is called the S5 methodology, which means: sort, set, shine, standardise, sustain. If you follow all five principles, you’ll not only improve your organisational skills but also make it easier to maintain your warehouse at a higher level.
To keep your warehouse organized and knowing exactly where each item is and how much you have of it, you need to do regular physical inventory counts. You may find this to be a time-consuming task, but it will save you a lot of time further down the line since you won’t have to look for where certain items are. Sure this still takes some time but it’s not as bad as it used to be. While this whole process used to take weeks now it has been reduced to about a couple of days depending on the size of your inventory. All you need to do nowadays is take your mobile device and point it at the part and then enter how much you have of it.
When it comes to accessibility, the location and position of each spare parts tray is going to play an important role in productivity. Just like you should keep items/parts frequently used the closest to you, you should also keep certain trays tabbed. By tabbed I mean marked with a piece of tape to signify a certain collection of parts. You can also place coloured tape to mark the position of a certain group of specific parts/items.
Staying organised is a skill, but it is a skill that doesn’t require you to solely confine yourself by the rules it sets. You can break certain organisational rules when it comes to setting up your warehouse. While you shouldn’t stay away from fundamentals, sometimes the circumstances will require you to adapt, and doing so with spare parts bins is one of the easiest and most effective ways.