What do you get when you combine a lack of available warehouse space, a growing ecommerce business, and the need for more fulfillment center capacity to meet peak demand? The perfect storm for building a new warehouse from scratch. In response to these trends, many manufacturers are designing, permitting, and constructing new warehouses from the ground up. Many challenges come with building your own warehouse — from finding the land to funding construction — but as we all know, nothing great comes easily. If you’re also in the early stages of researching and planning your new warehouse build-out, this blog post is for you!
Find the Right Location for Your New Warehouse
This may seem an obvious first step, but don’t rush into this process. Good warehouse location is critical, especially for long-term growth. There are a few things to consider when choosing a site, including proximity to customers, availability of labor, proximity to suppliers, and proximity to transportation. It’s essential to look at the supply chain of your company. Where do you buy your raw materials? Once purchased, where do you store those materials? Do you perform manufacturing? How will those products get to your customers? Is your distribution center nearby?
Design Your New Warehouse
Once you’ve chosen the perfect location for your new warehouse, it’s time to turn your attention to the design of the space. There are a few things to remember when designing your new warehouse. We recommend that you plan your warehouse layout to optimize the workflow flow. It’s best to focus on the process of how your products move through the warehouse instead of focusing on fixed storage locations. The most important thing to do is get the design right. It’s one thing to build new warehouse capacity quickly, but if the design isn’t right, you’ll be doing it again in less than a year.
Permissioning and Planning
You probably already have a general idea of what you want your new warehouse to look like, but do you have a permit in hand to build it? Understanding the process of getting your building approved, designed, and built is essential. Creating a plan to fund your new warehouse construction is also helpful. Sometimes, the cost of land, building permits, and construction will be thousands of dollars. It’s essential to have a plan for funding the project as early as possible so you can have ample time to get everything in order.
Construction of Your New Warehouse
This is the fun part! Well, sort of. Building your warehouse is probably the most exciting. Still, it’s also the most stressful portion of the process, from sourcing the right contractors, such as a Commercial Concrete Contractor for the flooring, to ensuring work is carried out on time. The most important thing to keep in mind during the construction of your new warehouse is that change is inevitable. Many things can go wrong during construction, so be prepared to make adjustments throughout the build. Be open to change as soon as you sign off on the blueprints. If you want to be successful, you must roll with the punches.
Installing Equipment and Facing Fruition
Now the fun part (for real this time)! It’s time to install your equipment. Now that you’ve gone through the complex process of building your new warehouse and installing equipment, you’re ready to start fulfillment operations. Give yourself a few weeks after the equipment installation to tweak and test your processes before trying to hit your goals.
Building a brand-new warehouse can be a risky and expensive proposition. However, improving your company’s efficiency and effectiveness can also be a great opportunity. You need to find the right location, design the space to make the best use of the available land, and get the construction done on time and within budget.