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Industry Dynamics

How to operate your forklift fleet efficiently?

Counts:81    Time: 22-08-18    From: Suzhou Teknect Engineering Co., Ltd.

If you are managing a business operation that requires the use of multiple forklifts, you need to adopt very effective fleet management practices. Doing so will help you reduce costs, improve operational efficiency, and eliminate unnecessary downtime while keeping your operations safe. In this article, we'll cover some important fleet management practices that you can adopt to ensure you run profitable business operations.

First, maintain continuous communication

Involving everyone, managing the fleet is much more efficient. Therefore, it is important to maintain continuous communication with technicians, forklift operators and supervisors. One of the ways to centralize this communication and ensure they provide you with relevant feedback is to make sure you outline exactly what data they should record. You can then use this data to make some key decisions about your fleet, taking into account their labor productivity.

Second, the classification of the fleet is a priority

If you run a busy warehouse, then you will definitely handle different types of work that require different kinds of forklifts. Therefore, it is important to ensure that fleets are categorized into different categories based on unique identifiers such as body number, tire type, and serial number. When you have such a detailed classification, your job will be very easy when it comes to sorting out the problems caused by a particular forklift. It can also be helpful if you need to find parts for maintenance purposes.

3. Arrange regular maintenance

There is no doubt that forklifts are often used to handle some of the hard work in warehouses. Over a period of time, they create some wear and tear that makes them inefficient to use, resulting in unnecessary downtime. The only way to ensure that this does not happen is to schedule regular maintenance for each forklift involved in the operation. Regular maintenance will enable you to identify potential issues while they are still in their early stages so that they can be corrected in a timely manner without impacting your operations.

Fourth, investment in the fleet management system

There's no reason why you shouldn't invest in fleet management software because they have a lot of benefits. For example, they are able to generate periodic reports to help you analyze and identify gaps that have an impact on your operations. Using one can also help you allocate fleets to different jobs in the warehouse in a more efficient way, eliminating the chance of forklifts being idle. You can also use the software to monitor the driving habits of forklift operators and take better measures to improve safety.

Here are some of the benefits you can get with fleet management software:

1) Forklift fleet utilization overview

The utilization of forklifts largely determines how much you will get a return on investment from them. However, in order to accurately measure utilization, you need to support your performance evaluation with appropriate data to ensure accuracy. Therefore, a good forklift management system should provide you with data related to forklift running time, 24-hour utilization, mileage and driving time.

The analysis of this data will help you understand how underutilized or overutilized forklifts are.

2) Forklift Safety Management Report for Analysis

Forklifts are some of the main factors contributing to warehouse accidents, so reducing this risk should be a key priority. A good fleet management system should provide you with key information to help you identify risk areas specific to forklift operations. Some important aspects it should capture are speeding event alert details and any other dangerous behavior.

3) Forklift operator performance overview

Forklift operators are key to improving the efficiency of forklift operations, so you need to monitor their individual performance astutely. A good forklift fleet management system should give you important information about drivers, such as whether they have invested enough working hours, a history of violations, and their general productivity. As a result, you can identify areas where operators need training and what you can do to improve their performance.

4) Forklift operator authorization management measures

One of the main reasons why forklifts are unsafe to operate is the operation of forklifts by unauthorized personnel. An effective way to prevent this is to take steps to ensure that forklifts are only accessible to authorized personnel. A good fleet management system should help you achieve this, allowing you to determine who can use forklifts and who can't. So you can rest assured that only trained personnel will be able to use forklifts.

5) Provide updated forklift maintenance information

Forklift maintenance is important for efficient and safe operation. A key factor in determining the frequency of maintenance needs for forklifts is their usage. Since the forklift fleet management system already monitors fleet utilization, you'll be able to better determine how often preventive maintenance to schedule in heavy use situations.

6) A good warehouse design
Great warehouse design is critical to how you manage forklifts in your fleet. For example, if you have a warehouse layout that ensures your fleet is closer to the part of the warehouse that needs them, your operational efficiency will be improved. This step will ensure that your fleet travels shorter distances, allowing forklift operators to do more work in a short period of time. If you run a large fleet, a good warehouse design also means that the path is organized in a way that allows forklift traffic to be smooth, saving time.

So, in order for you to have an efficient fleet management program, make sure you maintain constant communication with key personnel. To provide your business with the ideal warehouse design, you can consult experts who can tailor it to your operation. Fleet management software is also very useful in case you need an automated and data-driven approach to fleet management. Classifying your fleet also makes it easy to solve forklift-specific problems. After that, make sure to maintain your fleet regularly to keep it up and running.