Thursday 27th Oct 2016 - Logistics Manager

Labelling vital for location and retrieval

ASG Services has increased its involvement at Nippon Express’ distribution centre in Leicestershire extending its role as a single source of supply for floor marking, labelling and warehouse signage. The company has now completed installing a range of its products as part of a major expansion at the site, which has seen the storage facility increase from 11,160sq m to 18,600sq m.

As the UK’s largest distribution centre for Nippon Express, the Magna Park facility holds a vast number of products, operating as an import/export facility for Japanese and UK manufacturers. Providing onward distribution for 28 customers mainly in the automotive, manufacturing and retail sectors throughout the UK and with a large number of products handled for each customer – in one case, some 30,000 lines can be held – stock control and handling procedures are critical.

The supply of racking location labels by ASG Services is at the heart of this requirement, with each of the 21,000 pallet positions having alpha-numeric and barcode readable identification.

With up to 50 containers arriving each week and ongoing deliveries via Nippon’s own distribution vehicle fleet, the accuracy of product location and retrieval procedures is vital. Designed to interface with bespoke computerised stock management software, each ASG label is read by a hand-held scanner through an operator using a man-up forklift truck. This can elevate to the full 13m height of the VNA racking facility in an area of the warehouse that was newly opened to accommodate the company’s expansion.

“We have also used a colour coding system for each of the location labels as part of the Nippon Express contract,” comments ASG managing director Tony Gresty. “This provides a simple aid to visual recognition for the racking level as the same colours are used consistently throughout the premises.”

The company has also met the requirement for aisle identification with high visibility, alpha-numeric signs whilst ASG Service’s involvement at the site is completed by a new pedestrian lane marking area which has also now been installed.

“We worked with ASG some 12 months ago on the installation of two separate areas of floor marking,” comments Justin Heard, assistant manager at Nippon Express. “A red coating was used as a safety measure to mark a boundary for the forklift drivers alongside a new mezzanine structure whilst, nearby, yellow flooring was used to create a specific pedestrian walkway. The latter has now been extended to connect the existing warehouse to the new facility and clearly makes Distribution