Let’s take order picking, by way of example.
In a distribution or warehousing operation, the common working notion is “man-to-goods” order picking, which means that order pickers go to storage locations, frequently pushing or pulling carts and reading orders off paper. These pickers spend substantial amounts of time (up to 60%) walking between storage, so reducing that time-spend is an excellent thought.
But a good ergonomics program will also help facilities design workstations so that everything is within reach of the operator (to the extent possible). Ergonomic solutions are the consequence of executing the manual or automated systems. Carton and gravity flow systems, for instance, install easily into existing pallet racks, helping to create ergonomic workstations perfect for line side storage, assembly, or deciding.
Improved Space Usage Ergonomics may not have been a prime plant design consideration in the past, but now’s consumer-driven market demands that supply facilities work as efficiently and productively as possible.
Proper space use is of special significance during the holiday season, the busiest time of year for retailers. As stated in an earlier UNEX website post, “distribution businesses must be in high performance mode and prepared to manage peak volumes.”
By understanding the way that ledges and space are being used, UNEX notes, facilities can discover how best to maximize warehouse efficiency: “The placement of shelves and containers, along with the traffic patterns and complete layout of the building, ultimately impacts the skill for [facilities] to utilize any space available.”
Beyond product storage, an in-depth look at space use may also help warehouses design the workstation economically for workers used gravity roller conveyor. Prevent long periods of standing in one spot so that workers won’t need to take steps to reach merchandise or materials, reduce twisting, and the idea would be to minimize reach.
Final Ideas In the distribution center, ergonomics isn’t only recommended for worker health and longevity: It’s additionally essential to driving productivity in the warehouse.
How does your company view the connection between productivity & ergonomics?