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Yale Unveils New Brand Identity at ProMat

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Yale Unveils New Brand Identity at ProMat

Brand positioning addresses the changing demands of today’s warehouses and capitalizes on organizational strengths in research and development, and technology integration

The ProMat trade show got started with a major development from the Yale brand, with the company announcing an updated identity and brand positioning. Introducing Yale Lift Truck Technologies, a new identity to reflect the company’s focus on technology-enabled lift trucks and customer-driven design philosophy to deliver solutions for the labor, safety and productivity challenges in today’s fast-paced warehouse markets.

The updated brand reflects strengths at all levels of the organization, with independent dealers empowered to provide a seamless, responsive customer experience and the factory developing industry-leading lift truck technology solutions. The Yale focus on research and development and technology integration has an established record of bringing technology to market quickly, including commercial deployments of industry-first operator assistance technologies, hundreds of robotic lift trucks, and advanced electric power options.

The independent Yale® dealer network plays an important role in enabling the Yale technology experience on the warehouse floor. Dealers are free from the constraints of factory ownership and are instead empowered to focus solely on customer success, matching them with a solution tailored to their needs and providing the responsive support necessary for real-world results.

The rebranding also includes an updated logo that reflects the capacity of technology to push material handling operations forward. The logo features the same iconic “Yale” text, but with the addition of a box made of arrows that indicates the movement of lift trucks and products in the warehouse, and the brand’s role in advancing the industry and helping customers grow.

To learn more about lift truck technologies and solutions from Yale, visit

About Yale

Yale Lift Truck Technologies leverages over a century of material handling experience and substantial investment in innovation to bring the most advanced technology-driven lift truck solutions to market. The company offers a full line of award-winning lift trucks, including reach trucks, order pickers, turret trucks, pallet jacks and trucks, pallet stackers, tow tractors and counterbalanced forklifts, as well as powerful operator assist solutions, proven robotics and a wide range of power sources to help customers adapt to today’s demanding supply chain. Yale and its independent dealer network support these solutions with comprehensive after-sales service, parts, financing and training.

ROI 3PL distribution chargers made4net “largely making compromises between the way a warehouse wants to work and the way the system allows the warehouse to work,” logistics gather business

The Complete Guide to Improving Warehouse Space Utilization

Improving warehouse space utilization can improve productivity, enhance safety, save floor space and offer numerous other benefits. However, many people see it as a daunting task at first. Here are some practical steps to take.

Use Data Analysis for Better Insights 

It’s not always easy to see where to start when making a warehouse better designed for how people use it. However, data analysis platforms can highlight what’s already working well and where people can improve. 

For example, a data-driven platform could reveal which warehouse areas are the busiest at certain times of the day. It may also show persistent bottlenecks or indicate accidents are more likely to occur in certain parts of the facility than others. 

A data analysis tool will also show a warehouse’s fastest-moving goods, as well as those people don’t need to access as frequently. Such information helps people learn the best ways to reorganize the warehouse and promote smooth traffic flow. 

Warehouse managers can also use data analysis products once the warehouse improvements begin. Studying the statistics will show them if certain changes brought the expected benefits. Payoffs that aren’t immediately obvious aren’t necessarily indicative of failure, though. They could mean people need to wait longer to see the effects or make minor tweaks to see the advantages. 

Data analytics are also useful for maintaining executive buy-in. When leaders see that productivity climbed by a meaningful amount after people made efforts to save floor space or make another change, they’ll be more likely to stay committed to the ongoing warehouse space utilization improvements. Relatedly, they’ll approve more investments to help the company meet its goals. 

What Can Data Analytics Reveal?

A recent study showed respondents had an average of 85.6% peak warehouse utilization in 2022. However, 37% of respondents said their utilization surpassed 95% at peak times. 

Moreover, 47% of those polled said they needed more space in their facilities, making this issue second only to supply chain disruptions. The research also showed storage areas and receiving docks were the two most congested areas, highlighting them as perhaps most in need of warehouse space utilization improvements.

These are just some of the valuable takeaways people can learn by relying on data analytics tools. Whether a leader wants to save floor space or determine the best location for a new assembly line, hard data can take an executive from doubt to determination for change. 

Choose Vertical Systems to Save Floor Space 

It’s also beneficial to recognize what things people should prioritize to make the most significant progress faster. Many leaders realize they can enjoy multiple improvements by examining how to save floor space.  Focusing on that aim could prevent trip-and-fall incidents that lead to hospital visits and give employees the perception of an unsafe workplace. 

Maximizing floor space can also help people discover they have bigger warehouses than they thought. As companies grow, leaders often approve moves into larger facilities that require significant investments. However, the case may be that the respective businesses could have stayed in the same spaces longer if representatives looked for creative and effective ways to save space. 

One of the most impactful ways to save floor space is to store things vertically when possible. Consider a case where a metal-stamping company that kept its dies on a single layer on the floor. Stacking them would have posed a cross-contamination risk of residual oils dripping from a die onto the one below it. Moreover, stacked storage can facilitate metal grit transfer that leads to future product defects. 

However, putting them in a single row on the floor also took up a tremendous amount of space that the company could use in more valuable ways. The company invested in custom industrial racks rated for 40,000 pounds of vertical storage per shelf to solve these problems. 

This shelving solution was fully load bearing, meaning people could place items along the shelf rather than only over the support beams. That feature made these shelves more flexible for current and future needs. Warehouse managers should use this example for inspiration regarding how they might capitalize on vertical space too. That solution doesn’t work for every warehouse area, but it often has impressive effects when deployed strategically. 

Develop a Digital Twin for Better Warehouse Space Utilization

Many people wish they could gaze into the future before making significant changes to a warehouse. Some efforts that seem like the most appropriate options on the surface ultimately fall short because of unforeseen factors. However, people can use modeling and simulations to reduce the chances of such undesirable realities. For example, some logistics professionals use models to optimize their processes and explore new business opportunities. 

One possibility is to create a digital twin of the warehouse, then run various simulations through it before implementing them in real life. A digital twin is a highly realistic, computerized model of a physical asset or location. It could help people experiment with different layouts and how they each affect warehouse space utilization. Perhaps the warehouse currently has a U-shaped flow, but managers believe an I-shaped flow would better support the facilities’ ongoing growth. 

The digital twin could also prevent costly mistakes. McKinsey data indicated warehouses spend approximately $350 billion per year on warehousing. However, the company’s research also showed digital twins could cause a 20-25% increase in efficiency. The businesses test changes in the simulated environment, then get confirmation of which alterations would be most profitable or otherwise beneficial. 

People can see the optimal slotting and production flows or understand how equipment positioning positively or negatively affects overall workflows. Visualizing such details with the mind alone can be challenging. However, digital twins provide the visibility individuals need to identify problem areas and the best ways to cause lasting improvements. 

Warehouse Improvements Take Time But Are Worthwhile 

Revamping a warehouse can wholly change how people use the facility. However, such efforts require significant resources and dedication from individuals at all levels of the organization. Setting periodic milestones for everyone to aim for can be an excellent way to keep people motivated. Adjusting to changes isn’t always easy, but it becomes more manageable when it’s obvious every decision is an action that pushes the organization closer to an overarching goal. 


Lucas Systems Announces New Warehouse Technology To Serve A Gen Z Workforce

Lucas Systems Announces New Warehouse Technology To Serve A Gen Z Workforce

Distribution center technology provider Lucas Systems announced today its rollout of new technologies promising productivity, comfort and ease of use to a Gen Z warehouse workforce of the future. 

The technologies – built to serve the new “iGeneration” of workers born between 1997 and 2012 – promise reduction of worker stress, a less physically-taxing work experience, and help for on-floor supervisors by providing the tools needed to be more agile. New technologies include:


  • An all-new supervisor management console which provides leadership with a high degree of flexibility and agility to customize data, dashboards, and analytics specific to their operation and needs. Supervisors and managers can get actionable information in a way that’s easy to understand and use through fully-customizable consoles.
  • Improvements in reducing worker travel. Lucas Systems new algorithms and machine learning smarts help workers take up to 50% less steps inside the warehouse by showing them the optimal path to navigate. This is relief to physically-stressed on-floor workers as they can often walk 5-10 miles in just one day.
  • Ability for on-floor workers to use the smallest wearables for scanning. Lucas Systems certified its voice-enabled optimization suite, Jennifer, to run on a Zebra WS50, the world’s smallest all-in-one Android enterprise-class wearable mobile computer. 

These solutions and other insights around technology training, warehouse environments and new methods for division of labor resulted from Lucas Systems in-depth interviews with warehouse workers as well as a commissioned study, polling 500 U.S. warehouse workers nationwide. The research examined workers’ relationships with technology as well as their fears, expectations, and perceptions about their daily jobs.

Additional insights were released today in Lucas Systems guide, Competing for The Warehouse Workforce of the Future, along with recommendations for attracting and retaining a future workforce with unique attitudes around loyalty, work-life balance and workplace satisfaction. One insight is that a majority of Gen Z workers (73%) say robots will help them achieve greater accuracy and speed in their jobs.

Ramoutar says Lucas Systems recent tech advancements and its research insights offer a warning shot to warehouse operators who aren’t willing to adapt and change.

About Lucas Systems 

Lucas Systems helps companies transform their distribution center by dramatically increasing worker productivity, operational agility, and customer and worker satisfaction using voice and AI optimization technologies. 






ROI 3PL distribution chargers made4net “largely making compromises between the way a warehouse wants to work and the way the system allows the warehouse to work,” logistics gather business

Warehouses are Turning to EV Charging 

As the push to electrify driving grows, warehouse developers are increasingly focused on charging. The biggest barrier facing a massive uptake of electrical vehicles (EVs) is charging stations. It was the elephant in the room five years ago, and it’s barely budged since then. On  the shipping side, companies seeking fully electrified fleets will need a place to charge up. The warehouse makes the most sense considering our nation’s highways still have a ways to go in terms of charging stations.

 As of January 2022, there were approximately 113,600 charging outlets for plug-in EVs in the US. A good chunk of these is found in California, home to 41,300 private and public power outlets. Contrast this with China which has built out 800,000 across the country. From a shipping perspective, time is critical. For truckers accustomed to a quick diesel re-fuel, entry-level chargers today require up to six hours to reload a van, not to mention heavy-duty trucks. 

 Earlier in July, it was reported that Walmart ordered 4,500 electric vans from the manufacturer Canoo. In terms of growth in the commercial EV fleet, parcel-delivery vans are leading the way. Depending on the size and specifications of the battery, top-of-the-line chargers can get a van’s battery at least 80% charged in 30 minutes. It’s unclear what Walmart is using to juice its fleet, but top-of-the-line chargers are not cheap. 

 The most powerful public charger in the US today is a 350-kilowatt fast charging station. To put this in perspective, an Audi E-tron SUV is equipped with a 95-kilowatt-hour battery. The fast charging station can fully charge the E-tron in roughly 16 minutes, but because the battery can only accept at most 150 kilowatts per hour, the charging speed extends out to 40 minutes. The speed at which a battery recharges depends on the charger, the amount of kilowatts of power the battery can accept, the size of the battery, how charged (%) it already is, and last but not least, the weather.

 Adding charging capabilities to warehouses implies significant upfront costs. GE Appliances appears to be calling on the Walmart model, ordering “fast chargers” for their fleet of vans thus ensuring existing vehicles can be back on the road relatively quickly. A subsidiary of the home appliances company, Haier, GE Appliances uses its fleet of Einride AB autonomous truck freight vehicles to transport things like cooking products and refrigerators between warehouses and manufacturing facilities in Tennessee, Kentucky, and Georgia. Each truck has a range of roughly 200 miles per charge. Running local routes keeps the charging to a minimum, but of course, presents issues on long-haul trips. 

 The industry bet is chargers will become cheaper and more powerful over the coming years. Federal and state governments will need to further subsidize the charging station roll-out and this will undoubtedly turn political. The EV revolution continues to be slower than most would prefer. 

flexe warehouse technology

6 Innovative Trends in Warehouse Technology

Gone are the times when warehouses were simple hangars full of stuff. As technology progresses, new, ingenious solutions see the light of day. Some see daily usage across the globe. Others await further development to become viable. Yet, both have one thing in common: they’re revolutionizing the warehousing industry. Today, we’re focusing on innovative trends in warehouse technology already in use. The ones you can implement today to make your warehouse more efficient and effective.

Trend 1 – Goodbye, clunky Excell sheets!

People in the warehousing industry already know about Warehouse Management Systems (WMS). This is one of the innovative trends in warehouse technology already in widespread use. And not without reason.

WMS is a set of software and protocols designed to manage and optimize warehouse performance. It places complete control of your warehouse at your fingertips, thus helping you:

-Save money on labor and operating costs;

-Increase warehouse productivity;

-Improve accuracy and inventory visibility;

-Improve workforce management;

-Make inventory, shipping, and labor management more efficient.

However, WMS’s biggest strength is adaptability. You can either integrate it with existing systems or have it operate as a standalone unit. Therefore, whether you’re starting from scratch or you’ve been in business for years, you can definitely benefit from it.

Trend 2 – Automation and Robotics

The usage of automation and robotics isn’t new, per se. Various industries already use both to a larger or lesser extent. However, this trend wasn’t so popular in the warehouse industry up until recently. In the wake of the Coronavirus, many companies had to adapt their modus operandi. The focus shifted to reduce human contact while retaining efficiency. Automation and robotics were the logical choices. But, aside from keeping your warehouse operational, integrating both can help you:

-Reduce labor costs;

-Optimize the space;

-Increase productivity;

-Increase throughput.

When combined with employees, automation and robotics can dramatically increase the efficiency of your facilities. In some cases, even up to 100%. Now, that’s a productivity spike every prospective businessman dreams of.

Trend 3 – Picking matters

Order picking is an integral and indispensable part of operating the warehouse. It’s also tedious, inefficient, and prone to mistakes. Unless, that is, you integrate Wearables and Smart Picking Technologies. Aside from acting as a picklist, a combination of these technologies provides more convenience for both you and your customer. But, it also vastly increases the safety, efficiency, and effectiveness of your warehouse. Furthermore, it eases the burden on your employees, thus allowing them to focus on more pressing matters.

Trend 4 – “Tell” your warehouse what you want it to do

The combination of previous technologies gives you unparalleled control over your facilities. As such, you’d think it’s efficient enough. Well – not quite. There’s always room for improvement, and, in this case, it comes in the form of Voice Activation Technologies. This technology is already seeing widespread use. It’s functional enough, easy to use, and super convenient. After all, why would anyone sit in the office, clicking and typing thousands of times, when they can simply tell the warehouse what to do?

Trend 5 – “Smartify” your warehouse

The advancement of smart technologies opened a world of possibilities for various industries. Of course, warehousing didn’t fall short, either. In fact, all innovative trends in warehouse technology we listed can utilize smart technologies, in one way or another. Today, with only the internet and a smart device, you can manage an entire industrial complex. Without even setting foot on the premises. But, comfort and convenience aside, smart technology comes with many more benefits. The most notable ones are:

-Ability to track cargo or product in real-time;

-Data accessibility and transparency;

-Visibility and access to operation(s) 24/7;

-Improved worker productivity;

-Lower equipment downtime.

When combined with mentioned trends, smart technology allows for incredible versatility and flexibility, the two things necessary for the growth and evolution of every business.

Trend 6 – Go renewable to remain profitable

Warehouses consume copious amounts of energy to operate, even more so if they run temperature-controlled or refrigerating units. And even more than that, once they start implementing other modern technologies from this list. Needless to say, this can lead to some serious utility bills. That’s why many warehouse companies today focus their efforts on renewable energy sources – mainly solar power.

A warehouse, as a structure, allows for the incredible use of solar panels. Huge roofs are an ideal place to install a not-so-small solar farm. This, in turn, lets you create a semi-self-sustainable operation, thus cutting your operating costs significantly. And, as a welcome side-effect, it also increases the value of the building itself. So, renewable energy sources are an excellent long-term investment.

Tomorrow starts today

Living in the age of information, we witness the birth of new, amazing technologies daily. Many of them contribute to our lives, both personal and professional. But only if we’re willing to accept, implement, and change with them. Because, as much as we depend on technology – it depends on us, too. Therefore, following innovative trends in warehouse technology is more than a whim. It’s the future of the industry and a necessity.


Erik Waidhofer is a freelance author with over 15 years of experience in moving, warehousing, and shipping industries. When he’s not writing for Fairfax Transfer and Storage and other moving companies, he enjoys woodworking and watching old movies.

Agile Supply Chain

Insource or Outsource? That’s the Question Facing Companies When it Comes to Warehousing.

To insource or outsource your warehouse: That is the question.

Companies face many considerations when it comes to deciding whether to own or lease a warehouse filled with their own employees or hire a third party with warehousing expertise and their own workers.

Exploration of the latter has often caused the phone to ring—or the computer inbox to fill—for Todd Alloway, vice president, Contract Logistics at ODW Logistics. Since 1971—and including the 16 years Alloway has been with the company—the Columbus, Ohio, concern has been providing warehousing, distribution and transportation solutions for hundreds of brands.

Of course, ODW will take all the new business it can get, but Alloway concedes in a phone interview that outsourcing usually makes the least sense to a company that has “a team of logistics people inside the business.”

“They might have a vice president of supply chain who has 10 people under that person and a lot of other staff that are part of the business,” he says. “They may understand more about what they are doing” than a third party could coming in cold.

Alloway says he and his team must understand that before making a pitch to outsource to such a company, admitting it can get delicate if you are talking with someone who may lose his or her job or has buddies in positions that could disappear with outsourcing. “We have to walk that fine line,” he says.

It also might make sense to keep things in house if a company’s services or products are complex or highly specialized, something that can come up with those who are big in the manufacturing world, according to Alloway.

Typically, before partnering with a potential client, Alloway will meet with their leadership “face to face to ensure they are a good fit.” During that initial interview, he will gather information about the business. “I can’t go on and say why ODW will be better until I truly understand your business,” he says. “Upfront research is the first thing we have to do.”

“I tell folks that all the time that you can’t just hand me a price sheet and have me give you a price. There is no blanket pricing or one size fits all for businesses. We find out a lot of times that they don’t even know what they need. We have to find out what is valuable on both ends, we’ve got to find out what’s important.”

In today’s ever-changing modern warehousing, outsourcing may be what’s important. It allows a company to leverage someone else’s expertise in transportation, warehousing, distribution, setting up supply chains and maintaining compliance standards, so the original client can focus again on its core competency.

“A lot of our customers started out doing it themselves,” Alloway notes, but as those companies grew, so did their capital investments in staffing, equipping and maintaining warehouses. Suddenly confronted with the need to consolidate operations and/or become technologically viable, many such companies turn to third-party experts like ODW Logistics.

Another challenge with keeping a modern warehouse in-house is staffing, according to Alloway, who cites as an example his company’s Columbus base, where the unemployment rate currently hovers around 3 percent. Companies with warehouses, he says, must develop strategies when it comes to seeking, training and retaining skilled workers among an ever more competitive labor pool. Faced with the time, effort and cost of staying in the hiring game, many conclude it would be better to farm all that out so they can, again, concentrate on their company’s service or product.

When it comes to logistics, companies that ship to big box retailers also have to know the differing compliance, ordering and fulfillment processes of, say, Walmart, Target and Kohl’s. Concerns like ODW Logistics already thrive in that atmosphere because of experience already gleaned on behalf of existing customers, Alloway points out.

As a for instance, ODW’s Director of Marketing John Meier mentions a health and beauty customer that knew going in that the logistics company already worked with others in the same industry.

“One key differentiator” when it came to snagging that account “was our expertise with Ulta, Sephora, different salons and big box retailers,” Alloway recalls. “Word of mouth is still very big in the industry.”

Wanting to know whether ODW has experience in a potential customer’s industry is often the first question Alloway gets. Another, obviously, is price, “especially from someone new to the market that has done it themselves the entire time,” he says. “They want the new technology and whatever the latest and greatest inventory management system is, but they don’t understand the cost that gets that. A lot of time it is education on our part” that is imparted to the potential client.

Likewise, a company like Alloway’s can figure out the overall savings that will ultimately come from outsourcing, but the one thing he and his colleagues will not do is quote a price until they have completed research of the potential client and its industry.

Today’s “I want it now” shipping culture has challenged companies like ODW Logistics, concedes Alloway, who adds that he approaches a delivery schedule less on speed than on the best optimization of his trucks. “Next day and two day are still important,” he says, “but in a direct consumer market it’s more important how you handle returns.”

After pausing to think more about today’s expected speedy deliveries, he adds, “We have had to put in a valiant effort that last few years.”

However, Alloway also offers that with a new client, landing the account does not always come down to speed, price or even experience. He brings up Handgards, a provider of high quality food safety, food protection, protective wear and food service products. The El Paso, Texas-based company managed its distribution network for half a century before partnering with ODW Logistics a decade ago.

“One of the most important attributes they sought was a cultural fit,” says Alloway. “They are a family-oriented business and when we first went to visit them we quickly understood that, and we were able to help them see how ODW has the business values that would match theirs.”

You read that right: Choosing whether to stay in house or go with a third party can come down to whether you get your new partner and are convinced your new partner gets you. What was most important to Handgards was someone, as Alloway put it, “with a similar feel.” ODW now handles the food safety company’s logistics and warehouse support in a 300,000-square-foot facility.

“The people that I have worked with in the ODW organization have been excellent partners to our business and work diligently on our behalf,” said an executive with Handgards.

“Like with most companies outsourcing for the first time, there can be a fear of change, a fear of how a new one is going to handle a product,” Alloway says. “‘Will they do it like we do? Will they talk with customers like we do?’ We went and visited them, made some research and it did not come down to price. It came down to did they like us and did they think we would be a good business fit together.

“… Sometimes we are not the best fit, somebody else is or they should keep doing it themselves. You just do not know that until you do the research.”