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The Influence of Material Handling on Warehouse Design and Layout

The design and layout of a warehouse is made with careful consideration. Material handling has quite an influence on them because it is the basic function performed in any warehouse. Here are some of the factors related to material handling that influence warehouse design and layout.

Code Compliance

The first thing that needs to be kept in mind when finalising the layout and design of a warehouse is whether the said layout is in compliance with various codes and regulations like zoning regulations, building codes, environmental regulations, fire safety regulations, workplace safety guidelines, and more. Compliance with these regulations is necessary for not only legal reasons but safety reasons as well.

Flow of the Space

It is important that the layout of the warehouse has flow paths that allow material handling to be done smoothly, without any unnecessary obstructions in the way. There should be spaces created for various equipment to operate. For example, forklifts should have a clear path where they can be driven with their pallets without coming across any disruptions.

Appropriate Storage Space

A warehouse is usually meant to be a large space for storing inventory. So, it is natural that appropriate storage space is a requirement in its layout and design. The warehouse must have enough space for the storage of both inventory and various types of material-handling equipment. The design of the warehouse should also accommodate certain storage systems according to the kind of equipment being used.


There must be enough ways to access the warehouse so that the loading and unloading of the material can be done easily and efficiently. If there is only one space for it, it can lead to a waste of time and more often than not, utter chaos. So, the layout should be made in a way that there is easy access to the warehouse. Accessibility should also be there between racking systems and storage aisles so that equipment like pallet jacks and forklifts can easily be maneuvered between them.

Ease of Maintenance

Frequent maintenance of the material handling equipment and inventory storage systems is a necessity. So, the layout of the warehouse should be created in such a way that it easily allows for said maintenance. The design of the warehouse must make it easy for you to make regular inspections and make repairs easily wherever necessary.

Integration of Automated Systems

In today’s age, automated systems have become an essential part of material handling. The design of the warehouse must integrate automated systems for material handling. This includes conveyor belts, electrical equipment like pallet jacks, scissor lift tables, forklifts, etc., AGVs (Automated Guided Vehicles), AS/RS (Automated Storage and Retrieval Systems, and more.

These automated systems make material handling much easier and help in increasing efficiency. So, a warehouse’s layout and design should be created in a way that these systems can easily be integrated.

Ability to Adapt and Evolve

It is important that a warehouse’s layout allows for any major or minor upgrades, future expansion and more. Scalability is important for the warehouse so that it can keep up with the advancements and evolution in the business. The layout must be open to any changes that become necessary in the future in order to adapt to upgrades in the material handling systems.

The Bottom Line

This is the kind of influence that material handling has on warehouse layout and design. If your warehouse is ready and just needs the right material handling systems, you can Explore Reliable Material Handling Australia at AAL Store.