The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention has recommended that in manufacturing and warehouse facilities workers should be no less than six feet apart and not facing each other or they should be separated by physical partitions. For the vast majority of warehouses, implementing those recommendations requires significant changes to processes, schedules, and often infrastructure, leaving many warehouse managers and business owners at a loss for how to successfully make those changes while maintaining productivity. It is in fact possible to do and continuing to operate “as normal” could wind up being far costlier than investing in a few necessary changes.
The team at Engineered Products can help you determine the best way to update your facility to meet these new social distancing recommendations. Follow the guidelines below to ensure the safety of your workers and reduce the chance for virus spread in your facility.
- Stagger Shifts
Simply adding another shift to your schedule can potentially eliminate the need to make infrastructure changes in your facility. Schedule employees so that every other workstation is vacant during each shift and make sure that workstations are sanitized after every shift. If you are already operating a round-the-clock schedule, you will need to implement other changes to maintain the same level of output.
- Restructure Workspaces or Add Partitions
Examine the most congested parts of your facility and determine if it would be simpler to find a way to space out the workers doing those jobs to other areas or if it will be necessary to add plexiglass partitions. If it isn’t possible to keep workers six feet apart, partitions are a low cost way to improve the potential of person-to-person spread.
- Upgrade to Vertical Storage
Consider upgrading your picking workflow to incorporate vertical storage technology. The Hänel Lean-Lift® and Multi-Space® vertical storage systems are designed to have a picker remain at their post and be able to pick all of their products in one place instead of having to cross paths with other workers.
- Consider Adding Voice or Automation Technology
There are a variety of warehouse technology options that can help you reduce your headcount and help you maintain social distancing guidelines in your facility. You can read more about some of those touchless technology options for the warehouse on our blog.
Have questions about any of the options above or want advice about how to implement them in your facility? The experts at Engineered Products are here to help. Contact us today for a consultation.