Tuesday 25th Oct 2016 - Logistics Manager

Picking orders 24/7Storage system takes more product lines

Supplying plumbing components on a national and international basis, Hepworth Plumbing Products (HPP) has made sure its distribution centre is able to pick goods quickly and efficiently having asked Toyota to supply low level order pickers that can run on a 24-hour operation.

HPP, which supplies ground drainage systems, water services pipe systems and Hep2O flexible plumbing systems to Jewsons and Plumb Centre, is using four low level order pickers from Impact Toyota, one of Toyota Industrial Equipment’s leading regional distributors.

Martin Dawson, key accounts manager at Impact Toyota, explains: “Hepworth Plumbing Products run a total of three shifts a day and the company needed a picking solution that would be able to meet demanding shift patterns. The Low Level Order pickers together with Toyota’s 24/7 battery transfer system proved to be the perfect solution.”

Toyota’s battery transfer system, which is available on all of its electric trucks, only needs one person to change the battery and is simple to use. When the battery is ready to be changed the operator drives it into the battery bay located at the back of the warehouse and swaps it for a fully charged battery which corresponds to that individual truck.

John Bunting, warehouse manager at HPP, comments: “The warehouse focuses on first level order picking as it is more accessible and productive solution. The Low Level Order Pickers and battery transfer system are a vast improvement on previous equipment, which had to be parked and re-charged before the truck could resume work. n “Due to the nature of our business, low level order picking is the best method of putting an order together. Since the system was installed, our warehouse has been more efficient, and we no longer have to wait for trucks to be re-charged.” n SSI Schaefer is supplying and installing the complete storage equipment fit-out of Toolstation’s new national distribution centre. Toolstation, a multi-channel supplier of reliable trade products, is a privately owned UK company aimed at making life easier for trades people throughout Britain. Launched in 2003 by Mark Goddard-Watts, he and his family previously owned ‘The Woodscrew Supply Company’, which they transformed into Screwfix Direct before selling it to B&Q in 1999.

The new centre for Toolstation, nearing completion at Express Park, Bridgwater Somerset, will be fitted out with the latest Schaefer integrated materials storage system. This system will enable Toolstation to handle more than 10,000 product lines within narrow aisle pallet racking, shelving and pick face live storage.

Located over two floors, a powered conveyor system links the supply of replenishment stock and picked orders in plastic transport containers.

Mark Goddard-Watts, managing director at Toolstation, says: “Toolstation is a business with efficiency written all the way through it, which is why we chose SSI Schaefer to install a complete storage equipment fit-out at our Bridgwater centre. I believe that Schaefer understood our needs and offer a unique approach to each project they are faced with. We will be working hand in hand with Schaefer, developing, designing and implementing the most innovative yet cost effective solution for us.”