How to Improve the Flow of Your Inventory Process and Increase Warehouse Efficiency with First-In-First-Out (FIFO)

Red and Blue Pallet Flow Racks

As a warehouse owner, you are probably always looking for ways to optimize your inventory control process. However, finding the right warehouse inventory management system can be tricky. When working in a competition industry it’s important to stay on the cutting edge of innovation. One great way to increase efficiency in your warehouse and get an edge on the competition is improving overall warehouse processes. It’s true that even small changes in the management of your manufacturing inventory can make a big difference. 

In addition to having reliable inventory management software, one method many organizations utilize to improve warehouse efficiency is first-in-first-out (FIFO) warehouse stock management system. Let’s take a closer look at FIFO and how it can help your company.  

What is FIFO Warehouse Inventory Management System ? 

The FIFO warehouse system works just the way it sounds. It allows the oldest stock in your warehouse (or the head of the queue) to be processed first. FIFO can reduce the costs of holding onto obsolete goods and help you create a lean inventory management system. 

FIFO is considered to be the ideal stock rotation system, as it adds more structure to your business processes and improves production efficiency for your delivery team. Plus, it offers a lower risk of deterioration or spoiling, so you can ensure that your customers are receiving the best products possible. This feature is especially important if you carry perishable goods or require frequent stock rotation.             

Which Warehouse Pallet Systems Are Best for FIFO? 

The FIFO management process is excellent for sequentially moving inventory. But you may be wondering, which warehouse racking system works best with this method?  

The following pallet racking systems are ideal for FIFO: 

  • Selective Pallet Rack – Utilizing selective pallet racks enables you to have easy access to your stored boxes, containers, or pallets without having to move another rack to get to the inventory you need. However, they do require a warehouse with many aisles, which lowers storage density. Selective pallet racks are useful for companies that stock medicines, food, and other perishable items. 
  • Pallet Flow Rack  Pallet flow systems can increase the capacity of your warehouse (and even double or triple it) since they make use of your available vertical space. With this system, your pallets have rollers or wheels and can be loaded at the top of a sloping rack. Then, they move inventory at a controlled pace to the bottom of the incline. This method ensures that the face along your aisles stays stocked. Pallet flow racks can be both stand-alone components or part of multi-rack systems, and they are perfect for piece- or case-pick applications.  
  • Drive-Through Rack  Drive-through racks contain support rails that are engineered to store your pallets and boxes. The support rails attach to uprights that are easily accessible by forklift. To access your inventory, simply raise the forklift to the level of the support rail at a specific location. Since drive-through racks do not require picking aisles, they provide high storage density. If you store products in bulk that have a long lifespan, this warehouse racking system is an ideal choice.                        

With so many different types of industrial racking available, we understand that it can be challenging to pick the best option for your company. Luckily, the experts at A-Lined Handling Systems are here to help. We offer a variety of material handling systems that will help you manage your warehouse inventory stock as well as improve the overall workflow and productivity of your warehouse. For more information about our products, contact us today.