“We’ve reduced 300 square metres of traditional storage down to 35 square metres.” Ian Cleary, IPU Group Financial and Operations Director
IPU Group distribute, design and assemble high quality engine starting, engine control, fuel polishing systems and oil conditioning products for critical diesel and gas engine applications.
As part of a five-year growth plan, in 2014 the group moved to a much larger facility based in the West Midlands. Essential to their success, they wanted to make the most of the storage space at the new premises, ensuring maximum usability and scope for future growth.
Storage requirements are mainly for their wide range of spare parts, which had been kept largely on traditional shelving. Their storage needs had grown organically as the organisation expanded. As they planned their move to new premises, it was an ideal time to establish a system that was set out for efficient picking and packing and provided maximum value per square metre.
Linpic suggested a solution that provided greater efficiency and also give IPU the extra storage space it was looking for.
Planning for the right system
The team considered a number of factors when recommending the most appropriate solution, including:
- Space available, including the head height of the storage area
- The type, weight and size of the products to be stored
- The level of automation necessary to improve efficiency and profitability
- Integration with existing stock control systems for simplified management
- The IPU Group’s current and anticipated needs.
Having approached a number of companies, IPU decided to work with Linpic because our team showed how they were in tune with what the organisation was looking to achieve.
Ian Cleary, IPU Group Financial and Operations Director commented, “I was confident that the system Linpic suggested would offer us a realistic solution.”
Why we recommended reconditioned Kardex shuttles as the solution
When choosing between a shuttle and a carousel, the critical factor is the weight and size of the products to be stored. The parts IPU are storing are too large for a carousel and a shuttle was the ideal solution. The parts stocked are wide and varied in size and quantity, depending on their customers ever-changing needs. The Kardex option was more flexible as opposed to the fixed shelf pitch with a traditional carousel.
The Kardex shuttles recommended by Linpic were fully reconditioned used units, providing a significant saving on the initial capital investment compared to new machines and a fast delivery time.
“The carousels allowed us to maximise our space and streamline our processes.” Ian Cleary
Making it happen
IPU’s new building was prepared over the summer 2014, and the reconditioned Kardex shuttles were installed and operational by mid-December.
As part of our installation service, our engineers returned to site to make essential adjustments to the machines. When installed, the machines are empty and once weight is added from storing parts, the chain tensioning needs be adjusted to ensure smooth operation. Ian said, “Linpic were very responsive when we had the odd problem here or there – mainly in January….They’ve done their absolute best to support their product.”
Space savings: We were able to turn 300 square metres of traditional storage space into 35 square metres by using a system of six reconditioned Kardex shuttles. It meant IPU could gain the extra storage they were looking for without having to invest in additional space.
An efficient system: IPU took the opportunity of the move to examine their systems. Using this tray retrieval system gave store personnel “the most chance of going the minimum distance to fulfill an order.”
Ian commented, “The technology allowed us to be creative about how we stored our products and to maximise the business benefits.”
Health and safety: Even more product is now delivered to store personnel at waist height. Ian said, “The carousels gave us an opportunity, at a nice comfortable height, to [bring] everything together.”
A cleaner choice: While the IPU factory is a very clean environment, the products are protected from any dust and dirt because they’re contained within the storage shuttles.
Control: this tray retrieval system can be locked, which provides greater control over when and how parts are dispensed.
At a glance
Products to be stored: High quality parts for critical diesel and gas engine applications
Storage solution: Six reconditioned Kardex shuttles
- Substantially more storage
- Even more efficient layout for picking and packing
- Health and safety benefits
- Control from lockable storage units.
Looking to make more of your storage system?
Find out how a Linpic storage solution could help you maximise storage and efficiency for a cost effective price. Ring Paul or Darren now for a no-obligation conversation on 0116 277 0099.