PC computer based algorithm for the selection of material handling equipment for a distribution warehouse based on least annual cost and operating parameters
Warehousing does not add value to a product. On the contrary, warehousing is strictly an additional cost activity. It is a portion of the business system which affects the relationship of materials and packaging to the product, the facility, and the customer without adding useable worth or changing the nature of the product. The functions of a warehouse are receiving, storing, picking and shipping. Although these activities do not change the nature of the product, they are an essential part of the business. Since warehousing is a necessary and additional cost activity, it is important to maximize the effective use of warehouse resources (space, equipment and labor) while satisfying customer requirements. This thesis discusses the selection of several alternatives of material-handling equipment configurations for pallet handling and order picking in the distribution warehouse. The selection criteria is least annual cost subject to the ability of the equipment to satisfy the warehouse's operating parameters (load capacities and building limitations). The material handling equipment selection considers the materials to be handled, the activity pattern, and the building conditions. The materials to be handled are in unit common denominators, such as a pallet, tote-box, box, etc., and the load rate. The building conditions are building clearance height and column spacing. The process begins with the evaluation of the equipment as to whether or not it can accommodate the load rate of the material and whether it is appropriate within the building limitations. All equipment options which meet these criteria are evaluated on the basis of annual cost. The annual cost consists of two major costs: Inventory-related costs and transaction-related costs. The inventory-related costs include building cost and inventory cost, while the transaction costs include labor cost and vehicle cost. After the equipment has been ranked according to least annual cost in each storage, the compatibility of the equipment is evaluated. The equipment which has the least annual cost and is compatible with other equipment in the warehouse is selected. Once equipment configurations is established, the storage area needed to support the inventory is determined. The number of equipment units, the number of laborers, and the number of docks required to support the warehouse operations are also determined.
School Location:USA - Ohio
Source Type:Master's Thesis
Keywords:pc computer material handling equipment distribution warehouse operating parameters
Date of Publication:01/01/1990