Problem: Needed to double its parts inventory without adding floor space
Solution: High-density storage
Benefits: The investment paid for itself and then some. The dealership would have spent 10 times as much if they had raised the roof or purchased a new building.
Products Used: Cabinets
When Dallas Mack Sales acquired the Dallas Volvo Truck Center in 2002, parts manager Mitch Leone suddenly needed to house an additional 10,000 parts—$1.5 million in combined Mack and Volvo parts inventory—in a space that was already maxed out with 10,000 Mack parts. His choices: raise the roof, build an addition, buy a new building, or squeeze everything into the current space. Leone turned to Tim Smith, his Stanley Vidmar storage sales engineer for help. “Tim is handier than a pocket on a shirt,” said Leone. “He took my ideas and turned them into cabinets.”
After meeting with Leone, Smith measured the utilization factor of the old shelving and surrounding area. (The utilization factor measures how much of the space is actually being used for storage, and how much is being wasted.) Then he created a floor plan that showed how the combined inventories could fit into Stanley® Vidmar® cabinets and still leave available floor space.
The solution included installing several sizes of drawers spread over 258 cabinets ranging in size from 27 to 59 inches tall. Leone and his assistant parts manager, Allan Fite, were able to handle the implementation while still meeting the needs of the busy dealership. To ease the transition, they converted a small section of the parts department each day by removing the parts and taking down the old shelving a section at a time. Then they installed the Vidmar®preconfigured cabinets and reorganized the parts according to part number so each section was ready to go in the new configuration the next day.
The cabinets also solved an organizational problem. Before, parts were stored all over the place, depending how big the part was and what space was available at the time. Now each manufacturer and type of part is stored together, in one easy-to-find section. “All of the gaskets are in one place and the high-dollar electronics are securely locked. The parts are easier to locate and the adjustability of the drawers is priceless. This was one of the smartest investments we could have ever made in the department,” Leone says.