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Well, COVID-19 has turned just about everything upside down in the past few months. But the truth is — warehousing hasn't been able to slow down. Efficiency is more important than ever, now you just also need to change operations to also accommodate the slowed supply chain, increased order numbers, federal regulations, and, most importantly, the safety of your workers and customers.
Part of the solution has been shifting administrative work to remote spaces. However, most on-the-ground warehouse operations literally can’t be done remotely. And with increased eCommerce demand in the previous months, warehousing and distribution of goods have become critical to both economic health and essential consumer needs.
Thus, companies have to rethink their warehouse spaces to balance worker safety, operational efficiency, and facility cost optimization. How? Two simple steps:
While warehousing is considered an essential business, distribution facilities are still subject to COVID-19 regulations. In fact, to ensure the safety of all workers, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) implemented industry-specific guidelines regarding health practices and warehouse infrastructure.
Some of the key CDC guidelines include the following:
Establishing a safe working environment is the main priority for companies. However, meeting regulations while keeping up with rising demand can result in a just-barely-getting-by scenario. Luckily, there are solutions that can tackle both challenges at once, ensuring that warehouses run more smoothly than ever while maintaining a healthy work environment.
For companies relying on on-the-ground warehouse workers, social distancing can have significant implications. Your north star for a successful warehouse model: Decrease worker density while maintaining efficient operations. But how can companies implement this model while meeting customer demands?
The key to a safe, distanced warehouse layout design is the deployment of warehouse automation technologies. These solutions can decrease human contact throughout operations while tackling reconfigurations of the line, the process and equipment to deliver efficiencies.
Some warehouse automation solutions and capabilities include the following:
Automation helps to maintain a healthy, distanced working environment. Automated warehouse solutions support a layout that provides a clear, uninterrupted path of goods from one station to the next and ultimately out the door to the customer. For more details on efficient warehouse layout designs, check our guides for an ideal design for small, medium, and large warehouses.
If you’re not sure which category suits you — or you have a specialized warehouse size, layout or requirements — let us know and we’ll guide you on how to best (and safely) optimize your space.
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