At every moment, all over the globe, tons of merchandize are on the move. They are loaded and unloaded, placed in warehouses or sent on to retail stores. One thing is of paramount importance in this endless supply chain: space.
Making the best use of space in warehouses and trailers saves money and helps companies run their logistic operations more efficiently. It is well said that storage space is one of the most valuable types of real estate. In this context, one of the best tactics for optimizing space usage is pallet optimization.
What Is Pallet Optimization?
Pallet optimization means being consistent in the size of pallets you use in your warehouse and during shipments. When all pallets in a batch of shipped products have the same size, they will fit closely together, taking up as little space as possible.
But that is not all. Pallet optimization also means making the best use of the surface and stacking height of each pallet when arranging your containers and boxes loaded with products.
Standard Sized Packaging Materials – the Answer to Better Pallet Optimization
Professional packaging companies, such as Logistic Packaging, are constantly looking for ways to help companies improve their logistic operations. Standard packaging materials were invented and developed to satisfy this need for productivity and better logistic operations through pallet optimization.
At the present, the standard sized pallets are EURO plastic pallets. They have the following footprints: 800 x 600 mm, 1200 x 800 mm and 1200 x 1000 mm. At the same time, plastic containers and boxes are made to fit on these pallets. For instance, EURO containers have footprints starting from 300 x 200 mm and up to 800 x 400 mm. These containers can be easily arranged on a EURO pallet, covering all the useful surface.
Why Should You Enforce Pallet Optimization Practices in Your Company?
1. Get Rid of Old and Unreliable Packaging Materials
What does not fit properly on a EURO plastic pallet should go away. These are usually old cardboard and wooden crates, which you kept around out of habit. This old generation of packages was never designed to meet pallet optimization standards. At the time when they were useful, the global supply chain was less active as it is now. There were fewer players in the international trade and logistic costs were lower.
At the present, speed and cost controls are the rules of the game. And implementing pallet optimization practices is one of your competitive tools for winning this game.
2. Cut Your Shipping Costs
As we mentioned earlier, pallet optimization is not only useful in the warehouse, but also in transit. If you create a compact stack of products on your pallets, they will fit better inside the trailer and take up less space.
Thus, you will pay smaller shipping fees and, over time, you may be able to optimize your product prices. In this way, you win in two directions: cost control and competitive advantage on the market.
3. Improve Security during Loading and Unloading
Most labor accidents in warehouses are related to handling loaded pallets. When the stack of products is not stable and well secured on the pallet, the crates and containers can slip and topple, injuring your employees.
You are then liable to pay for hospital fees and offer compensations to each injured person working for you. When they are instructed to apply pallet optimization techniques, these accidents will virtually disappear. A properly loaded pallet with crates of compatible footprint is stable and can be safely handled.
4. Speed Up Order Preparations
When a customer sends an order for products, they expect it as soon as possible. In retail, especially for fast moving consumer goods (FMCG) speed is paramount. FMCG literally flies off store shelves and supermarket employees need a constant supply of products to replenish them.
When you use standard EURO pallets and containers, your employees will be able to arrange each order neatly and prepare it for shipping faster. Without using pallet optimization techniques and professional packaging materials, they would have to spend time considering how to fit each box and make sure the stack atop the pallet does not topple.
5. Reduce Operational Losses
Every accident involving an unstable stack of products on the pallet leads to losses. The products loaded on the pallet will be damaged and unfit for selling. The packaging materials (boxes, crates) will get broken and need to be repaired or replaced. If there is an injured person, you will lose the money you have to pay as compensation.
This is why so many companies use pallet optimization in warehousing activities. Their logistic managers observed a significant decrease in these losses and found strategic ways to use the money they saved in this manner to help the company grow.
The team of packaging experts at Logistic Packaging knows everything about pallet optimization and the best packaging materials you need to improve your logistic operations. Send us an email or schedule a live Skype video chat to discuss how we can help you adopt the best practices in warehousing and product shipping!