2012 Warehouse/DC Operations Survey: Mixed signals
November 01, 2012
2012 DC network profile
The profile of this year’s distribution network remains mostly the same as the past few years.
Sixty percent of respondents operate less than 250,000 square feet of space in their distribution network, with most common clear heights of 20 to 29 feet. Derewecki predicts that, over time, the mix is going to shift towards taller, higher buildings. “Lift truck technology is making higher buildings very practical,” he says. “Newer, double-deep reach trucks, for example, can lift to a height of over 36 feet.”
Seventy percent of respondents report undertaking some kind of distribution network optimization and location studies, mostly on an “as-needed” basis. As a result of these studies, half of respondents (50 percent) report “moving inventory among warehouses” as it is the easiest and quickest option among all the other network improvement actions. For those adding DCs as a result of these studies, most cite “improved customer service” (70 percent) and “the penetration of new markets” (36 percent) as their top two drivers.
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