Who is better at laying out a parts distribution center than those responsible for picking the parts?
The 80,000-sq-ft PDC operated by Trailmobile Parts & Service Corporation in Erlanger, Kentucky, was designed with plenty of input from the folks whose legwork gets the orders out.
It was a balancing act, between size of the part and its manufacturer. While parts produced by the same supplier are generally kept together, so are products of similar size. The warehouse is coded, with alpha designations for the small-parts storage area and a separate area for large, bulky, or heavy items.
“Our pickers are responsible for the order from beginning to end,” says Tom Nault, operations manager. “The variety of the things they have to do helps keep their jobs interesting and helps us retain employees.”
Trailmobile Parts & Service Corporation employs 50 people at the Erlanger distribution center. Seventeen work in the warehouse, moving parts and accessories through the PDC's five shipping docks and two receiving docks.