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The lift trucks and racking have improved productivity efficiently, resulting in 30% year-to-year growth.
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Barrett Distribution Centers, a third-party logistics service provider based in Massachusetts, has grown into a family-owned network of warehouses spanning the United States. Supporting regional and national customers, Barrett warehouses encompass more than 3 million square feet and are involved in the movement of a variety of goods, including consumer packaged goods, on-demand auto parts and products for online retailers.
On a rapid growth path, Barrett faces the daily challenge of delivering continuously growing order volumes on time, while also opening new facilities to handle the increased volume efficiently and economically. One of the company’s top priorities is maximizing existing warehouse space to accommodate more products while avoiding the pitfalls of over-crowding, as well as conditions that could contribute to a reduction in productivity.
Barrett teamed with a lift truck manufacturer to redesign its 260,000-square-foot headquarters facility in Franklin, Mass. The project was the first in a series of projects that began with warehouse layout and design services and progressed through rack installations and new lift trucks. The manufacturer’s reach truck and pallet truck are credited with translating the designs into action, while its facility design services, along with the performance level of its lift trucks, anchor Barrett’s ability to handle increased volume and continued growth.
One of the reach truck’s features provided the productivity gains the company needed to turn entire truckloads in 1 hour and 15 minutes, while picking 22 pallets in less than 40 minutes.
“There’s a difference between productivity and production. The customer doesn’t always care about how many units per hour, but they do care that I finish the job today,” says Arthur Barrett, president of Barrett Distribution Centers. “The [reach truck] really improves our ability to complete the job every day.”
With new racking designed by the lift truck manufacturer and its efficient, productive reach truck performing the heavy lifting, the company recorded 30% growth year-to-year in 2014.
“As Barrett has grown with new facilities all around the country, we never could have kept up with the volume without the combination of [the lift truck manufacturer’s] racking solutions and the [reach truck],” says Tim Barrett, chief operating officer of Barrett. “The two go hand-in-hand. The exceptional performance of the reach trucks makes the racking really work.”
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