Warehouse , Tips

We’re halfway through 2017 now so you’ll probably have a good idea of how well your operations are performing in line with your start of year targets. Are you doing well or do you need to need to shake up your processes to get back on track?

Whilst we strive to fill our blog with useful resources for warehouse and logistics managers, there are hundreds of useful other blogs out there. To save you scouring the web, we’ve compiled a list of 7 must follow warehouse management blogs to check out (in no particular order!)

Shelving.com Blog 

Shelving.com are a shelving supplier based in Michigan USA offering storage and shelving products in the US and parts of Canada for both commercial and home. Their blog focuses on health and safety, making the most of space in the warehouse and maximising efficiency.  

Posts We Love From Shelving.com blog

  • Unusually shaped items in your inventory? Shelving.com run you through methods to shelve awkwardly shaped items such as piping and large appliances, without having to use excessive amounts of space.
  • Amazon prime day is one of the busiest and most daunting days of the year for those working in product distribution, drop shipping or direct retail. To help you ready your operation for the big day, check out their top tips to prepare for Amazon prime day.

Blog article shares for Shelving.com over the past year - 480!

 Best warehouse blogs to follow

 Reddit r/Warehousing 

Whilst Reddit is technically a forum rather than a blog – we thought it deserved a spot in our top warehouse management blogs post.

Reddit is an absolute goldmine of information if you know where to look – the focus of this sub-reddit is inventory management and control, transportation & distribution and services that support warehouse operations.

Link bait blogs and answers that wholly promote to a single service or product are prohibited from this sub-reddit so you won't be inundated with businesses trying to sell to you.

As well as being able to source useful information and ask questions in these sub-reddits – it’s a great place for businesses to show their expertise, with questions regularly being asked by warehouse managers.

 Reddit warehouse management sub reddit

Which Warehouse Blog

Which warehouse are a logistics company specialising in sourcing warehouse storage space and logistics services for clients in the UK and Ireland. Their blog focuses on logistics trends, warehouse efficiencies and chain management efficiencies and trends.

Posts we love from Which Warehouse blog

Blog article shares for Which Warehouse Blog over the past year  - 50!

Blogs with information for warehouse managers

Westfalia Blog 

Westfalia are a provider of warehouse solutions based in Pennsylvania USA, with a specialisation in providing automated storage and retrieval, self-storage, and order fulfilment solutions. Their blog focuses heavily on automation and automation trends but also features blogs aimed at warehouse managers.

Posts we love from Westfalia blog

Blog article shares for Westfalia Blog over the past year  - 48!

Westfalia warehouse management blog

Commerical Warehousing Blog 

Commercial Warehousing are a warehouse logistics company based in Florida USA, their blog is updated frequently and is split into various categories including warehousing, transportation, technology and packing.

Posts we love from Commercial Warehousing blog

  • The one thing all warehouse management and logistics blogs have in common is speculation of the future of the industry. Commercial warehousing wrote a blog post back in 2014 speculating what the future of logistics could look like – some of these predictions were absolutely spot on!

Blog article shares for Commercial Warehousing Blog over the past year  - 93!

commercial warehousing blog for warehouse managers

Warehouse Rack and Shelf Blog 

Warehouse Rack and Shelf are suppliers of material handling and storage products to distributors and retailers based in the USA. Along with their insightful blog, they have an ask an expert feature which allows you to send your questions directly to them.

Posts we love from Warehouse Rack and Shelf blog

  • If you find yourself constantly replacing wooden pallet racking, rack and shelf list some of best alternatives to wooden racking and their benefits, including plastic, aluminium and wire.
warehouse rack and shelf blog

RFgen Blog 

Last but not least on our list is RFgen, providers of mobile and wireless automated data collection solutions for WMS and inventory management solutions. Their blog focuses on supply chain management and warehouse automation and efficiencies.

Posts we love from RFgen blog

  • There are plenty of blogs out there with recommended efficiencies to save time and money in the warehouse. RFgen highlight 3 tools that work in the background to ensure modern warehouses run smoothly in this blog post.

Blog article shares for RFen Blog over the past year  - 671!

Rggen racking and shelving blog for warehouse managers

Expert Information and Advice From Bristol Storage

As you can see, there are countless useful resources online for warehouse and logistics managers. At Bristol Storage (aside from our useful blog), our expert team are always happy to share our expertise, advice and recommendations in any area of warehouse management, racking, storage or operations you may have questions about. 

Just give us a call on 0117 955 5211 or fill out a contact form and we’ll get back to you. 

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Warehouse , Tips

Pallet Racking Repair or ReplaceWait, what? And no this isn’t a ploy to get you to purchase brand new pallet racking from us. We’ve seen an influx of companies offering ‘pallet racking repairs’ for serious damage, with warehouse managers opting for this cheaper option and putting their workforce and inventory at risk.

Of course in some cases these remedial repairs will suffice in making racking safe once more, but there are numerous scenarios whereby a replacement is the only real option.

Find out more about the dangers of having your pallet racking repaired as opposed to replacing it, as well as how you can extend the life of yours.

When To Replace Your Pallet Racking

In some cases, such as scuffs, chips, other cosmetic faults or in a situation where the lower-tier of the racking has only seen minor damage, a repair can be the most appropriate solution. However, you should always consult an expert before deciding which route to go down.

Scenarios where a replacement is essential include:

  • If there is any rust - signs of rust are signs of weakness in the integrity of the metal. A repair and a paint job might mean the rust has visually gone but the metal will still be weakened. 
  • If you notice your beams bending/deflecting, remove the excess load – if the beam stays deflected after removal then it will need replacing.
  • If there is significant damage to the sides of the racking or there is damage in multiple places.
  • The racking has been repaired several times previously and is still showing signs of structural weakness.

Trying to repair these serious issues by yourself is a bad idea and poorly repaired racking can lead to injuries, inventory loss and work stoppages – costing you a lot more than replacement racking. 

Maintaining Your Pallet Racking

In an ideal world, warehouse managers would keep their pallet racking well maintained and avoid having to pay for repairs or replacements. There are a number of steps you should take to ensure you get the most out of your racking:

Protect them from bumps – Pallet racking may take the occasional bump from a forklift or other vehicle in the warehouse. You can implement racking protection at a low cost to take the brunt of these hits. Additionally, introducing flooring tape to cordon off the racking will discourage workers from driving too close to the racking. 

Don’t overload – This may sound obvious, but often warehouse managers and employees will ignore the deflecting / bending of the racking’s beams until it’s too late.

Avoid DIY – By carrying out DIY on your racking, your putting yourself and your employees at risk. If you notice an issue with your racking, have it inspected by a professional who will recommend the best course of action for you whether that be a repair or replacement.

Train your staff – Providing your staff with rack safety awareness training makes them more conscious of the issues that can arise from poorly maintained racking, as well as training them on how to prevent damage to the racking and why it’s so important to report any damage they cause or notice. 

Plan for growth – If you are experiencing a period of growth, be sure you properly prepare for it. Implement additional racking systems where necessary to avoid putting your existing racking under a workload it cannot handle.

Inspect regularly – Regular pallet racking inspections mean you can catch damage early, this might mean for a quick and easy remedial repair as opposed to a replacement down the line.

 Protect pallet racking with barriers

A Word On Second Hand Pallet Racking

Pre-used pallet racking often comes at a very desirable price tag, and may even look the part. But often you will find the problems hidden by a lick of paint will cost you more in replacements down the line. At a glance, some of the most common problems with second-hand racking include:

  • Deflected beams and planks
  • Poor or aged welding
  • Bent diagonals
  • Rusted components

In addition to these common problems, second-hand pallet racking will rarely come with a guarantee. Check out our blog post on second hand racking for our full analysis on the dangers of compromising on quality to save money.

Need Some Expert Help?

Ensuring regular inspection of your pallet racking is a legal requirement, and can ensure flags any deterioration is flagged up early so you can revoke the problem before it becomes a serious issue – eliminating the need for replacements.

As a SEMA Distributor Company, we are able to carry out comprehensive reports on all makes of pallet racking and shelving systems. Give us a call today on 0117 955 5211 to book yours.

 

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Tips

Wooden Pallets Stacked High Many pre-used items come at a very persuading price. Second-hand bicycle? Bargain. Second-hand chest of draws? Bargain. Second-hand pallet racking? NO. 

Safety is paramount when it comes to purchasing pallet racking and that is exactly the one thing that can not be guaranteed from a second-hand seller. You never know what’s being covered with a lick of paint or being hidden from the sale.

 Avoid costly mistakes when purchasing pallet racking and if you’re going to do it, invest some money into getting an expert to check it out with you. Or alternatively, check out the reasons why we think you should be avoiding this:

 1.    Deflected Beams, Broken Planks

Naturally, over time your beams and planks will slightly deflect due to the continuous movement of stock being imported and exported. Although this is to be expected, it can become highly dangerous once it reaches a certain limit.

When buying second hand, this is something to be aware of. Although the seller may be selling racking that has a deflect within the SEMA standards, it will not take long after purchase for it to become hazardous – particularly without having the knowledge of what was actually stored on there previously.

Buying new will not only take away the worry of or when the beams will go, but also save money in the long run.

2.    Poor welding

Another thing to keep a strong eye out for is poorly welded together beams. If this has been done, there is a strong risk of the whole structure collapsing which is not only going to put you out of pocket, but will leave you without racking causing disruption throughout the business.

3.    Bent diagonals

Bent diagonals can be a red light sign of a mis-used racking system or a genuinely faulty structure. This, of course, means your bargain pallet racking is not going to live a long life. Avoid falling into this trap by buying new. Not only are you going to have a brand new, stronger structure, but you can relax knowing that you not only have genuine pallet racking, but a warranty that covers it too.

4.    Rusted  components

Buying second-hand pallet racking is buying from the unknown and/or hidden. Although most purchasers will know to look for the obvious signs of rust and corrosion, you can’t always tell what’s hidden under a lick of paint.

It is important that your pallet racking is not weakened by rust as the frames will not be able to hold even the allocated weight allowance.

There is no way of telling where the pallet racking has been kept or how it has been treated. Make sure you’re thinking smart about cover ups if you’re buying second hand.

5.    Money Bin

The majority of the time, second-hand items will not come with a warranty which means if something goes wrong, it’s coming out of your pocket.

You need to think hard about if it’s worth spending more money on fixes than it’s worth. It doesn’t take long to get stuck in the trap of constantly paying out for repairs, so why not make a secure investment in some new warehouse racking? Not only will you be saving money in the long run, but also time and efficiency.

6.    Replacement Parts

When buying second-hand pallet racking, it is more difficult to figure out what has been replaced, fixed, painted over or even if those replacement parts are genuine.

If the brand is well known, there is more of a chance that the replacement parts are genuine. However, this does not mean it is for definite. You wouldn’t buy a Ford car with a Vauxhall engine, so don’t make the same mistake with your pallet racking.

7.    Get a professional inspector

If second-hand pallet racking is still the route you want to take, make an investment in precautions. Understand that you don’t know how often the pallet racking has been checked, toyed with or endured DIY jobs.

By taking a professional inspector with you to check it out, you can be secure that all the obvious signs of faultiness have been checked over.

SEMA Approved Racking Inspections

General maintenance on racking systems is healthy, however if it becomes a regular occurrence it can quickly become dangerous. Regular inspections are a legal requirement under UK law to be taken annually. Bristol Storage are SEMA approved which means all of our equipment is tested and in date before being sold.

We understand that without a durable and safe product in use, both safety measures and quality is compromised.

Need Some Expert Help?

Whether you’re looking for some new pallet racking for yourselves or looking for advice, make sure you are going to the correct places.

With over 50 years of experience with pallet racking, we are here to help you in any way we can. If you need helping finding what’s best for your warehouse or want to find some racking that you can rely on, give us a call on 0117 955 5211 to speak to a member of our team.

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Warehouse , Tips

New Year’s Resolutions for your Warehouse

2016 To-do listJools Holland will have done his best to ease us out of one year and into the next, you’ve will join in heartily with Auld Lang Syne and have gone around the room kissing your nearest and dearest. As you look forward to the year which lies ahead, the only thing left to do is decide on your New Year’s resolutions.

It’s the same every year. We have a chance for a fresh start; time to look at the previous year and then decide how we’re going to be better, kinder, fitter, and healthier during the year ahead. But let’s be honest. With all the best intentions, how many of us are sticking to our New Year’s resolutions by the time we reach the end of January? According to Richard Wiseman from the University of Hertfordshire, only 1 in 10 of us will achieve our goals and most of us will have ditched them by as early as the 23rd January!

It’s not a great statistic but one that you can understand. Here’s the ten most popular resolutions people make and probably don’t stick to. They might strike a chord with you…..

  1. Lose weight or exercise more
  2. Quit smoking
  3. Eat healthier food
  4. Learn something new
  5. Spend less and save more
  6. Drink less alcohol
  7. Travel more
  8. Give back to the community
  9. Spend more time with family and friends
  10. Relax more and reduce stress

Resolutions at work

So if we’re all failing miserably with the New Year’s resolutions we make in our private lives, perhaps we can fare better at work? Especially in the warehouse, it’s worth thinking about what you can do better next year and how you can actually make it happen.

Here are five resolutions you can make and keep in 2016:

Go green

If you haven’t already got an environmental policy, review what you can do to operate in a greener way. If you contact a local recycling company, they’ll give you a quote for supplying bins to place around your warehouse and empty them on a regular basis. If you can site them near your packing area, people are more likely to use them.

Think about what you’re doing with your old pallets too. Introduce a scheme where you offer your old pallets to locals or community groups. They can be used for all sorts of things from DIY projects to garden benches or raised beds.

A clean sweep

In some warehouses, there are piles of clutter that seem to have been there since the company began! Get a skip and enlist the help of your team to go through the place section by section, throwing away anything that’s not needed and finding a suitable storage place for anything important.

Once you’ve had a good clear out, make a vow to keep the warehouse clean and clutter free. This will not only make the warehouse safer for your employees, it will also help with productivity.

Safety first

Warehouses can be dangerous places to work. Whether you have a great safety record or not, it’s a good time to review your working practices and see if there’s anything you can do to make it better and improve conditions for your employees. If you’re not already doing it, check your warehouse racking regularly or get us in to carry out a SEMA approved inspection for you.

Let’s talk

Don’t underestimate the importance of regular meetings with your warehouse team. It’s a great opportunity to discuss how everything is running and ask for their ideas about how things could be done better. They might have noticed a problem and thought about a solution, or been thinking that new or higher racking solutions could create greater efficiencies. You may be pleasantly surprised at some of the suggestions they come up with!

Out with the old and in with the new

If you’ve been thinking about redesigning your industrial warehouse storage and investing in some new warehouse racking systems, or even a mezzanine floor, now’s a great time to do it. Although there will be an initial outlay, you may find that it’s offset by greater working efficiencies and safety. All you have to do is call our helpful team on 0117 955 5211 and they’ll arrange for you to have a free site survey to assess what you need and let you know how much it’s likely to cost.

Get In Touch

We hope you all have a fantastic New Year and manage to stick to your resolutions (for a few days at least). If you plan to make some changes in your warehouse and would like our help to achieve them, we’d be happy to help you. Just give us a call on 0117 955 5211 and one of our experienced and knowledgeable team will tell you all you need to know about pallet racking, mezzanines, repairs and maintenance or SEMA inspections.

 

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Warehouse , Tips

Top Tips to Improve your Warehouse Inventory Management

Inventory app on iPad in the warehouseWhether you’re a well-established and successful company or a recent start-up the running of your warehouse and tracking of its inventory is key to your operation.

You might simply be looking to better organise your space, upgrade your warehouse capabilities, improve inventory control, or even build an entirely new storage unit.

Well, whatever your plans may be, we have decided to detail some of our top tips on how you can ensure successful management.

Take a look below and let us know if you can add any more:

What is Inventory Management?

As a business owner with warehouse space, we’d hope that you already know the answer to this question. But we thought we’d highlight its purpose again, so you can appreciate exactly how you should be running your warehouse floor.

Inventory management is the process of efficiently overseeing and controlling the ordering, storage, and use of components used in production. In addition you will also need to oversee and control quantities of products coming in and out of the existing inventory.

As one of your major assets, mismanaged inventories inside your warehouse can create significant financial problems such as being presented with a shortage or overflow of stock.

Proper Training

Spending additional time training every employee, in regards to the proper procedures, will undoubtedly save you both time and money in the long term.  You should, as standard be providing adequate training that is specific to their areas of work anyway; so just take a few minutes more to detail your inventory process.

Don’t Order Too Much

We understand that you might be concerned about running out of stock but by ordering too much inventory you can easily spend too much and hinder your organisation in the process. In addition, excess stock will just sit on the shelf and is therefore subject to potential damage and depreciation.

Instead why not start with some projections of how much supply you’ll need? It’s best to gauge what you’ll require by looking at the stock records for the past year whilst taking into account seasonality, national holidays, and product popularity.

Accurate Tracking

There are unfortunately opportunities for mis-counts everywhere. Once you know how much inventory you need – and how much you currently have – why not get your hands on an Electronic Data Interchange (EDI) or bar scanning system to help eliminate errors?

In fact, The Benefits of Barcode Scanners are far reaching as more and more companies are switching over to this technology in the warehouse to improve both productivity and efficiency. However, we’d suggest choosing a few products at random each day and checking that your systems line up with what is physically in stock.

Forget the Spreadsheets

Yes, we really said it. It’s time to say goodbye to your friend Microsoft Excel – who really know how to use it properly anyway? By using the spreadsheet there is no foolproof way to ensure that errors are not made or the opportunity to allow multiple individuals working on the data in synchronisation.

Take the time to find alternative software that suits you and your business and take advantage of their usability and convenience. The apps, which run in real-time, can ensure accuracy across all systems potentially improving customer service, fewer data entry errors, and better compliance. We’ve highlighted a couple below:

Retail Inventory is an excellent inventory management system that also scans barcodes and syncs with point-of-sale purchases.

Lettuce is not only an inventory management app (bear in mind that it’s iPad only) but integrates related systems such as order capture, payment processing, shipping, tracking, customer relationship management, and sales and order analysis. This system isn’t free but at $59 (around £40) a month – plus $25 per addition use – it might be worth your while.

Goods Order Inventory has been designed to help manage orders, inventory, and sales on a mobile device. The app is currently free, but as a result does not currently integrate with other services or software.

Reorganise Your Floor Plan

Don’t be afraid to tackle the warehouse floor to take charge of your inventory. After all, lack of organisation here will certainly spill over into other areas. Demand production changes so why shouldn’t your storage systems?

From pallet racking and mezzanine flooring to storage containers and shelving you can ensure that the organisation and efficiency of your warehouse runs accordingly.

Location, Location, Location

Make sure you and your staff know where everything is. Ensure that there is a procedure in place when a product is moved from one location to another and that every employee knows the products rightful home. By doing so you will undoubtedly prevent loss and reduce processing time.

Signage and Labelling

It might be obvious to many but don’t forget the correct labelling. This will ensure personnel are directed through the warehouse safely as well as helping them find inventory fast and easy. This is an actual requirement from the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) which is required by law.

Let Us Help

Whilst we’re not experts in telling you how to run your warehouse we can certainly help with the organisation of your stock using clever pallet racking and other nifty solutions. Just give us a call on 01179 555 211 for some friendly advice and information.

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Warehouse , Tips

Our Top Tips to Warehouse Safety

Warehouse SafetyWe often post on our Facebook page warehouse fail videos that continue to amuse us (once we know that the individual concerned is safe and well, of course).

However, whilst providing mild entertainment, the accidents, which often come close to major injuries, should really be preventable.

With some simple safety tips in place, along with the correct safety equipment, your warehouse can be a much safer environment for you and your employees. If you haven’t already, ensure that you implement the proper regulations, or risk being featured in our Friday Fail on our Facebook page! ;)

Successful Health and Safety Management

Did you know that around a quarter of all major injuries – from broken bones to hospitalisation – in the warehousing industry are caused by workers slipping or tripping? In addition, poor manual handling can result in individuals being hit by moving or falling objects.

To avoid these situations there are a number of legally required conditions that you must abide by to ensure successful health and safety management. These will include risk assessment, proper training, and regular inspections. But how can you be sure to achieve the best results? Take a look at the regulations and tips below and remember that you might want to involve the workforce, as well as health and safety representatives, in decision making:

Identification

Identifying the key health and safety priorities within a business or workplace is fundamental.

Undertake a risk assessment to recognise hazards, who could potentially be harmed and how, evaluate risks, and decide on the precaution methods. Ensure that you concentrate your efforts on these priorities and eliminate risks where possible – and where you can’t, reduce the risk to an acceptable level.

Adequate Training

Upon identifying the risks to employees and anyone else who might venture into your warehouse, ensure that staff are given basic training in Health and Safety. Training should be specific to the hazards associated with their work and the environment in which they work.

At a minimum, employees should understand and thus follow the various signage placed within the building. This will include their awareness of emergency exits and standard protocols as well as the regulations surrounding requirements for protective clothing.

Using Safe Systems

The law requires that equipment such as fork lift trucks, conveyor belts, racking, and ladders for example are suitable for the intended use. They should be maintained in a safe condition and inspected for deterioration on a regular basis. Finally, such equipment should only ever be used by the people who have received adequate information, instruction, and training.

Lifting equipment and fork lifts are further discussed under The Lifting Operations and Lifting Equipment Regulations 1998 (LOLER). These regulations state that lifting equipment provided for use at work is:

  • Strong and stable for the particular use and always marked to indicate safe working loads.
  • Positioned and installed to minimise any risks.
  • Appropriately and safely used.
  • Subject to on-going and thorough examination.

Appropriate Signage & Instruction

Eliminate potential safety hazards by ensuring that they are well signed and required actions are clearly instructed. The use of simple signage, such as hazard warning tape, load notices, and floor signals can make the world of difference.

In fact, the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) requires by law that you have proper signage in your place of business to protect employees and customers. Not only will their use protect your business and its employees, but your inventory too. A lack of safety warnings will put you and your employees at considerable risk.

In addition, signage can provide simple reminders for your employees about warehouse safety; the likes of hard hats and protective glasses for example.

Regular Inspection

To ensure on-going success for your Health and Safety efforts it is important that regular inspections are carried out.

Not only will inspection of your warehouse, pallet racking, and shelving ensure that it is always up to scratch and the safety of your stock and personnel is maintained, but regular inspection can help reduce both insurance premiums and maintenance costs.

Let Us Help

Whilst the above information is by no means exhaustive, it is certainly a great place to start.

At Bristol Storage we offer an inspection, repair, and replacement service for your pallet racking to ensure that you don’t miss any hidden dangers. In addition you can find a host of safety equipment available in our store to ensure that you comply with the appropriate regulations. Just give us a call on 01179 555 211

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Tips , Shelving Systems

Show Your Shed Some Attention This Summer

Rundown Garden shed Never under appreciate the importance of your garden shed. It has likely taken a battering from hail, snow, and torrential wind this year already.

And although it may look a little bit tired right now, you’ll soon be back in there come the sunshine. Therefore, we think you should pay it a little attention and some TLC. With the help of Bristol Storage we want you to take pride in your shed and show it off this season. Take a look at our top tips below:

Our Top Tips to a Stunning Shed

Some men take sanctuary in their man sheds – it’s the one place they can unleash their masculinity and get away from the obstacles life throws at them. So make sure you get the most out of your shack with these easy maintenance products and tips.

Keep It Tidy

The last thing anyone wants out of their safe haven is another disorganised, clutter filled room, meaning that you can’t utilise its full potential.  Why not take a look at these products that can lend a helping hand:

  • If you have a small shed then have no fear – it’s not the size that’s important. Our Adjustable Steal Shelving is perfect for getting the most out of small spaces. Its scratch resistant feature means you can safely storeShelving solutions from Bristol Storage anything like saw blades or gardening tools worry free. The thick steal shelving can withstand a staggering amount of weight with minimal maintenance so you can reuse it again and again.
  • If you’re lucky enough to have a bigger shed, why not keep it in order with our clever shelving solutions? Perfect for those on a budget, these solutions are robust and super easy to put together.
  • More of a gardener than a DIY kind of person? We think you need to check out this tool wall. Shelving doesn’t have to be unsightly; we make our designs as sleek as possible to fit in with home life. All gardeners know that there will never be enough room for all your gardening tools, so why not invest in some storage containers or shelving to maximise the space in your shed?

Now we’ve got the shed tidied up, you’ll need somewhere to work.

Somewhere to Work

What better way is there to boost your productivity than having a high quality, durable work bench to not only keep you safe, but to maximise your creativity? Every household has the same basic needs; new items need to be built, or old items need to be fixed. But these aren’t the kind of activities that you can simply carry out on the kitchen side or the dining table. No – you need to treat your newly organised shed to its very own workbench.

  • The risk of developing strain-related injuries whilst working on a workbench is pretty high which is why it’s crucial to make sure you get one with an ergonomic design to best fit you. Most industrial heavy duty workbenches can be adjusted according to the task being completed. Take a look at our dual workbench which is available in a number of different sizes, as well as an additional shelf for even more storage space.

Keep it Organised

Finally, you have a newly tidied shed with a handy workbench but the crucial piece of the puzzle is to maintain all that effort with some organisational skills.easy wipe racking strips

  • Perfect for things that would otherwise end up at the back of the man draw, these pick bins are great for anything from spare nuts and bolts to office equipment. Not only are they small and useful, but they come in a range of colours.
  • Whilst you’re getting down and dirty with a whole summers worth of DIY, gardening and tea breaks, it is easy to forget where things go and how you’ve organised your shed. With the ability to be tailored to any length you want, our easy wipe racking strip is fantastic for writing labels on and colour coding your new boxed and organised tools. The wipeable finish enables these strips to be reused shed loads of times!

Can we help you?

We offer a huge range of shelving, racking and work benches perfect for both at home and at work. If you need help choosing what would be best for you this summer, give one of our team a call on 01179 555 211 and we will be happy to tell you all that you need to know.

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Tips , Entertainment

Biggest and Best Breakfasts for Warehouse Workers

Full English Breakfast close up shotBreakfast is an important meal. You might remember your mum shouting at you as you ran out of the front door with a chocolate biscuit in your hand saying that’s not good enough.

Well, she was right. As she always was.

Providing the body and brain with fuel after an overnight fast you should eat a hearty meal within a couple of hours of waking. In fact, did you know that this is where the name comes from; breaking the fast?

So, in an attempt to help make all of you hardworking warehouse employees feel the benefits of a great start to the day, we’ve compiled some of the biggest and best breakfasts you should treat yourselves to on a regular basis.

Why Eat Breakfast?

We’re not going to lecture you, you're grown men and women at the end of the day. But upon researching we came across a few interesting facts we thought you should be aware of. Take a look below:

  • Improve Cognitive Function – Eating a good breakfast will restore glucose levels in the body that are essential for the brain to function. In turn this can improve your memory, concentration levels, and even make you happier.
  • Overall Healthier – People who skip breakfast are 4-5 times more likely to be obese than those who don’t. After eight or so hours of not eating, breakfast is the only way to jump start your metabolism allowing your body to start burning calories straight away.
  • More Energy & Sharper Focus – Eating a breakfast that is high in fibres and carbohydrates can help you feel less tired and more focused throughout the whole day.

The Full English

Centuries old, the Full English Breakfast is a national tradition. From crispy bacon to a perfectly runny yolk, it doesn’t really need much explanation; we all know the happiness it brings. But if you’re really up for a challenge take a look at this Man Vs Food inspired Fry up which offers up four times your daily calorie allowance.

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Warehouse , Tips

How secure is your warehouse?

Gold padlock securing entrance to warehouse buildingSecurity is something that we all need to take seriously. Our warehouses are full of valuable stock and for some people it’s all too tempting to just help themselves. The sad fact is, it’s not just professional thieves we have to watch out for - delivery drivers and even our own staff may try to get away with taking the odd item, convinced it will never be noticed.

It may not seem like a big deal but a recent report by the Centre for Retail Research showed that employee theft and fraud costs UK retailers £1,681m and that supplier/warehouse fraud alone, accounts for a staggering £246m worth of losses.

Amazon’s approach

This global company has been hit hard by employee fraud. With a high turnover of staff and warehouses stuffed full of small items that are all too easy to conceal, they've suffered big losses. In an attempt to curb the rise of theft from insiders, they put up flatscreen TVs showcasing real stories of staff who committed ‘on the job’ theft and giving details of what they’d stolen and how they’d been caught. The actual members of staff weren’t named but instead were represented by a blacked out silhouette stamped with the word ‘terminated’. It may seem like a drastic measure but if nothing else, it serves as a very real warning to current staff that they’re being watched and theft will not be tolerated.

From hero to zero

Don’t think it’s impossible to protect yourself from falling prey to the thieves. There have been some great security success stories. One UK company invested over £1 million in security measures in a bid to attract new occupants to its industrial warehouse units on a Yorkshire business park. Using a mix of CCTV cameras, security lighting, new fencing, roaming security guards and also the establishment of an estate management committee, they’ve managed to create a safe and welcoming community for a wide range of businesses. As a result, the crime rate is now officially zero and they're attracting even more companies.

Increase your security

Here are some simple steps you can take to ensure your warehouse is secure and your losses are kept to a minimum. Even better, they’re easy to achieve and won’t call for a million pound investment:

  • Data security – make sure that only authorised people have access to your warehouse management systems and that they’re strongly protected with passwords. That way you can keep track of who’s updating the information about stock levels, goods received or goods dispatched.
  • Staff checks – unfortunately, not all staff are honest and trustworthy. Before you employ anyone, make sure you carry out stringent background checks and think carefully about which areas you give staff access to. You might also be able to improve security by setting a ‘two person rule’ for entering locked cages or locked pallet racking areas.
  • Staff identification – especially in large organisations, it can be hard to identify members of staff from visitors or delivery drivers. If this is a problem in your company, equip your team with uniforms or name badges so they're instantly recognisable.
  •  Mirrors - convex mirrors are already used in many warehouses for safety but they can also be a security asset. By placing them in blind spots or areas that are out of view, they make it harder for any fraudulent activity to take place.
  • Visitors – make sure that all visitors sign in so you know who is on the premises and don’t let people from outside your organisation roam freely. To combat this, some companies set up a separate area for drivers where they can wait in comfort while their vehicles are being loaded.
  •  Entry points – ensure all doors and windows are secure and locked when not in use. If possible, use pass keys or electronic tags so only authorised personnel can gain access to your warehouse. Many systems will even show you who's entered and at what time.
  • Warehouse layout – you can help keep your warehouse secure just by thinking about where everything is positioned. Your shipping or docking areas are the most vulnerable so try to site the manager’s office so it has a clear view of the main doors. If possible, fence off outside areas and restrict the vehicles that can gain access to the loading bay – including staff vehicles.
  • Security cameras – even if they’re not monitored 24/7, cameras are a huge boost to your security. They act as a strong deterrent to staff or outsiders who may be tempted to steal from you and if a crime is committed, they will help the police catch the culprits and recover your goods.
  • Security alarms – again these are a really good deterrent. If your warehouse is in an area where an alarm won’t be heard if it goes off at night, they can directly alert the police if anyone tries to gain access to your premises.
  •  Security guard – although this is a more costly option, there really is no substitute for having a live presence in the form of on-site security. Criminals are unlikely to try to break into your premises if they know they're protected around the clock.

Get In Touch

No matter how secure we think our warehouses are, it's always worth a little reminder to review what we're doing and see if we can make any improvements. If you're also concerned about safety, you can talk to us about pallet racking, repairs and maintenance or SEMA inspections. Just give us a call on 01179 555 211 and one of our experienced and knowledgeable team will be happy to help you.

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Tips , In Other News...

A month by month warehouse guide

Coloured pins on various calendar datesWhen you work in a busy warehouse, just keeping on top of the day-to-day work is difficult enough. Add to that the need to schedule in time to meet all your safety obligations, and it’s easy to see how some things can get forgotten.

Take a look at your diary for the coming year and think about how you can plan everything in. If you can tick one thing off your list every month, you’ll find that so much more manageable than reaching June and realising that everything needs to be covered off in a few weeks.

We’ve put together a month-by-month guide. It’s not an actual ‘to do’ list but it will give you an idea of how you can plan for the year ahead. We’ve also included some key dates for your calendar.

March - Staff Reviews

If you’ve all been running around like mad March hares, now’s a great time to review the performance of your staff and give them an opportunity to discuss their role and make suggestions for improvements around the warehouse. Quite often, asking for feedback from the people who are at the front line will throw up really useful ideas.

Notable dates:

6th March        Mothering Sunday

25th March      Good Friday

27th March      Clocks go forward

28th March      Easter Monday

April – SEMA Inspections

Don’t be an April fool when it comes to your racking and warehouse storage systems. Make sure you have your racking inspected regularly to ensure it’s safe and compliant. If you’re not qualified to inspect it yourself, we can do it for you. Just give us a call to discuss your SEMA racking inspection.

Notable dates:            

1st April            April Fools Day

23rd April         St George’s Day

May – Emergency Procedures

Mayday, mayday. Do you have proper procedures in place if there’s an emergency in your warehouse? If you work in a large or hazardous site, you’ll probably need a formal process in place that outlines clearly how to raise the alarm in an emergency and where the evacuation and muster points are. You’ll also need to display a detailed site plan showing shut-off valves and electrical isolators.

Notable dates:           

2nd May          Early May Bank Holiday

30th May         Spring Bank Holiday

June – Fire Safety

They don’t call it ‘flaming June’ for nothing. This is a good month to look at your fire safety procedures. Your fire officers need to have a simple system in place to ensure everyone has left the building and all know where to assemble. Regular tests of the fire alarm as well as fire drills should be carried out regularly and properly documented.

Notable dates:           

19th June          Father’s Day

21st June          Health & Safety Expo, London

July – Racking Training

Celebrate Independence Day by making sure everyone knows how to spot warehouse racking problems for themselves and can operate safely. SEMA run regular courses showing delegates how to maintain racking structures and the correct maintenance procedures to follow.

Notable dates:            

4th July             American Independence Day

August – First Aid

With any luck August will be hot, hot, hot but make sure you don’t get burnt! Ensure your warehouse has the right number of qualified first aiders and that they’re all up to date with their qualifications and record keeping. It’s also a good idea to check that their first aid boxes are restocked and complete ready for any medical emergencies.

Notable dates:

29th August      Summer Bank Holiday

September – Health & Safety

Falling leaves are a sign of Autumn but make sure you look at your health and safety procedures to prevent any falls, trips and slips in the warehouse. Keep your floors clean, dry, free of hazards and clear rubbish from walk areas. Where you have steps or mezzanine floors, ensure the steps or edges are marked clearly by floor markers and there are handrails where possible.

October – Manual Handling

Don’t let there be any Halloween horrors like pulled muscles or back injuries in your warehouse. Musculoskeletal disorders (MSDs) are the most common occupational illness in Great Britain, affecting one million people a year. Anything from heavy lifting to repetitive order picking can lead to MSD’s so double check that all your staff have had manual handling training and more importantly, that they’re putting it into practice.

Notable dates:           

30 October      Clocks go back 1 hour

31st October    Halloween

November – COSHH

Guy Fawkes might have liked to live dangerously but we don’t have to. If you work with hazardous substances, you need to follow certain procedures as set out by the COSHH. You’ll be required to review if there’s a safer way you can work and if you can’t avoid exposure, and you’ll be required to ensure adequate controls are in place.

Notable dates:           

5th November             Bonfire Night

13th November            Remembrance Sunday

December – Mechanical Handling

The best present you can give your team is to keep them safe as they go about their jobs. Where they’re using forklift trucks it’s essential that they’re properly trained. It’s also important to have good systems in place to ensure safe traffic and pedestrian movement and for control and maintenance.

Notable dates:   

21st December            Winter solstice (shortest day)

25th December            Christmas Day

Get In Touch

Do you have a calendar system in place to help meet your safety obligations? Let us know what you do in your warehouse. If you need any help or advice about safety or SEMA inspections, just give us a call on 0117 955 5211 and one of our experienced and knowledgeable team will be happy to help you.

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