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Create an Efficient Warehouse Layout

June 27, 2022

Warehouse managers do their best to create an efficient workplace filled with employees who can handle a lot of inventory, and process incoming and outgoing goods and materials. The way the shipping center is designed directly affects its ability to operate successfully. Warehouse owners and managers are becoming aware that the design of the layout is essential for its workers to be able to pack and ship stock quickly, get to inventory in a timely manner, as well as have a strong organizational flow to the space. However, if your warehouse isn’t efficiently using the warehouse capacity that’s provided, it can have a negative effect on your supply chain, workflow, and shipping times.In this blog, you'll learn how to create an efficient warehouse layout.

warehouse layout
Carton Flow Rack
Pallet Rack
Warehouse Layout



Design A Floor Plan of The Warehouse

Whether you are designing a warehouse from scratch or you’re remodeling your facility, a floor plan is essential. Knowing how you will make use of each section and create a flow is what can make or break a warehouse's efficiency. The layout you design depends on the nature of the facility, be that an e-commerce warehouse, storage facility, or shipping center.

Before you begin, decide how you want the warehouse to flow. Do you want it to be organized by product, by the size of inventory, or by the storage time of the item? The work should flow how you want it but the inventory should be easily accessible by employees so that items can either be stored or shipped efficiently.

This plan should include every door, hallway, and section of the warehouse as you want to be certain that all the space is being utilized. At 85% full, your warehouse is at capacity, but a way to combat a smaller space is by making use of vertical storage solutions. Surprisingly, only 22-27% of your space should be used for storing materials, the rest of your floor space should be allocated for the loading dock and reception area. Without enough space to move and receive inventory, your warehouse’s efficiency can be slowed which directly affects your bottom line.

The equipment you intend on using must be considered in the layout, as you want a wide enough aisle for the forklift or pallet jacks to move and retrieve stored items safely and proficiently. Generally, a warehouse should have isles that are between 12-13 feet wide, but that’s dependent on the size of inventory you plan to store and/or ship.

Get Help When You Need It

You can create this map/plan by hand with pen and paper, but some find it difficult as the measurements need to be exact so that you’re certain everything will fit inside. All your warehouse's inventory should be measured, units should be defined in pallets, boxes, or cases. The cubic volume and dimension for every unit should be included. Many warehouse managers find this difficult and instead opt for professional CAD Services or Computer Aid Design Services. Companies such as American Surplus offer CAD Services that help warehouses create layouts that maximize the vertical and floor space.

Creating an effective warehouse layout isn’t just about getting as much product inside your facility as possible, it’s about giving your employees, the equipment, and the inventory the room it needs to be kept safely, moved quickly, and shipped efficiently.

Call American Surplus Inc. and speak with one of our knowledgeable sales associates today at (800) 876-3736 or request a quote online.


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