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Warehouse trends: five challenges iWAREHOUSE® can help

Operator errors, equipment and product damage, and underutilized lift trucks are just a few among the many challenges that exist in every warehouse. It can be hard to track them, but knowledge of all facts is crucial to productivity – especially when a large fleet is involved. We’ve not only identified five of these challenges that stand out, but with Raymond’s iWAREHOUSE® product we’ve developed tools to help companies operate more efficiently, safely and profitably.

In today’s competitive environment it’s not easy for companies to increase their revenues by simply charging more for their products or services. Downward price pressures have existed since globalization has become the norm and accelerated after our last recession. Today, companies that want to survive and thrive are looking to improve their bottom line by removing out all unnecessary costs from their operation. Whether it’s a large corporation or a small family-owned business, every company with a warehouse that operates today is facing the same critical operational challenges.

Here are the five challanges:

  1. Do you know who is operating each vehicle?
    iWAREHOUSE® provides access control so companies can closely monitor who can operate each vehicle. Additionally, with iWAREHOUSE® companies can customize the operating performance of each lift to match individual operators’ skill set.
  1. Are your lift truck operators properly trained and does their training comply with OHSA-requirements?
    Not only will iWAREHOUSE® keep track of what training each operator has had, but it will also monitor what equipment each operator is certified to use and when those certifications are set to expire.
  1. How many dollars in profit are you losing as a result of impact damages?
    Gone will be the days when reckless, unsafe driving is allowed to happen because there was no way to track who caused what damage. By using iWAREHOUSE®, every operator will have a unique identifier that they use to log into a vehicle. When an impact event occurs, the iWAREHOUSE® system sends out a notification to a manager or supervisor showing which unit was involved, which operator was logged into the unit at the time, how significant the impact was, and the date/time the event occurred.
  1. Are there vehicles in your fleet that aren’t used for the right application?
    Without accurate, actionable data there is no way for a company to know if all of their lifts are being utilized to their fullest. Login hours, deadman hours, travel and lift hours are all captured by iWAREHOUSE®, and – through Raymond Gateway – these hours are presented in a concise, easy to understand format.
  1. How much money is being wasted as a result of lift truck batteries not being properly charged, discharged and watered?
    With more and more fleets going all-electric, the cost of batteries becomes very important. As the single most expensive item on most lift trucks it can make a huge difference to a company’s operational and capital budgets how batteries are charged and maintained. A component of iWAREHOUSE® called iBattery helps companies track the charge and discharge of each battery, the battery’s state of health and water level remotely.

iWAREHOUSE® is one of the industry’s most advanced fleet-optimization programs available. It provides a fully integrated suite of tools that continuously collects data in real-time and puts it into easy to read graphic reports. There are eight different components that make up a complete iWAREHOUSE® solution.

iPort

This is the beginning of taking total control of the fleet. Certified technicians will install the software into the truck’s onboard vehicle manager, allowing connection to the VM using a single cable versus the traditional method of using multiple wires and sensors. The informational data is then transmitted via Wi-Fi to any device of choice – computer, tablet or smartphone at one-second intervals giving you a real-time update of every truck in your fleet.

iWAREHOUSE® Gateway

This is where all the components come together on the platform of your choice. Get one snapshot of the entire fleet and be able to narrow it down to any truck. It allows warehouse managers to make comparative analyses with ease from page to page at the warehouse, desk or miles away.

iTrack

This component specifically tracks the lift trucks’ overall cost of ownership. When accessed, iTrack can show data for specific facilities, regions or the entire company. iTrack can operate on one machine or many, thus making it ideal for those wanting to get started with fleet management.

iTrack can drastically help with managing a fleet and reducing the overall cost of ownership. iTrack can help track:

iVerify

It’s illegal to operate a forklift without proper training and the operator’s employeer can be liable for hefty fines. iVerify ensures that operators are only using machines that they have been certified to use. This component of iWAREHOUSE® will also eliminate pre-shift truck inspection reports on paper – and conveniently store them all digitally in one location. Both of these are critical aspects for a warehouse’s OSHA compliance requirements.

iMetrics

This element of iWAREHOUSE® lets you track your truck down to the hour. It lets you track a truck’s history with reports of truck utilization and productivity. With iMetrics a company can:

iAlert

The iAlert component of iWAREHOUSE® takes the guesswork out of deciding when a truck needs servicing. It immediately sends out a notification to an authorized technician or in-house technician by sending real-time truck diagnostic codes. This helps with getting the truck serviced right on the first call.

iControl

iControl lets a company control a forklift from the desktop as compared to going to trucks individually to set certain speed and acceleration parameters. iControl will help a warehouse become more productive by allowing modifications to travel speed and travel acceleration of each lift truck in a fleet.

iImpact

Depending on the impact, a hit can do a lot of damage to the lift truck itself or to what may have been hit. Before iImpact, it was impossible to track and analyze the impact and how to take preventative measures. iImpact gives a company real-time updates of what’s going on in a fleet. It gives the information that is crucial to the hit:

Keeping track of large fleets in a warehouse is difficult for anyone to do with the many challenges faced. But there are answers for operating more efficiently, safely and profitably. If iWAREHOUSE® is something that could benefit your company, please call Jason Thompson at 206.304.9230 or send an e-mail to jthompson at raymondhandling dot com.

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