When running a warehouse that uses materials handling equipment (MHE) it’s important to know how you can use the space to its full potential. Having a site survey conducted can help you to understand which equipment is best to use and how to use your warehouse or storage space optimally to ensure you are getting the most out of it. In this piece, we’ll take you through what you can expect from a materials handling site survey and look at some of the benefits of having one done. 

What is a forklift site survey?

A forklift site survey is essentially an audit conducted by a materials handling professional. For example, if you have a warehouse that makes use of equipment such as forklifts, a site survey will provide you with insights into how these can be best used and make suggestions on potential equipment upgrades. 

A materials handling site survey will also provide information on how you can use the space more optimally. Some spaces have the capacity to stack products and inventory a lot higher than what they currently do. A site survey can therefore make useful suggestions on the best and safest ways you can stack goods to ensure the space is used optimally. 

What will the forklift site surveyor do?

There are also several typical aspects of a site survey that should be covered by a professional surveyor. These points pertain specifically to the necessary equipment needed for material handling and cover the specifications of the forklifts used. 

Surveyors will have a look at aspects such as the maximum height of the top beams of racking systems and roof / sprinkler clearances. This will ensure that the forklifts you commission are able to lift loads high enough in a safe and efficient manner. 

When assessing the appropriateness of a forklift, a site survey will also cover the maximum weight a forklift can safely carry to make sure it’s viable to carry the necessary mass of particular loads. 

Other specifications professionals will look at will include the fuel type needed to power the forklift or whether or not there are charging points needed for those that run off electricity. 

You will also be advised on the best operating spaces for a forklift, assessing whether your equipment can be used outdoors or if a forklift is only appropriate for indoor use. 

Why should you have a materials handling site survey done?

With continual technological development, industries such as e-commerce and logistics businesses need to stay up to date with the equipment available to them and explore options that will keep them competitive in their field. Understanding how to use new equipment on the market can be advantageous to your business in terms of maximising profits and ensuring that your operations are up to standard. 

Health and safety standards are also changing constantly with the introduction of new equipment and advancements in options. Getting a materials handling site survey done can, therefore, help you maintain your organisation’s health and safety standards. 

This is important when conducting business, as it gives your customers peace of mind that you operate in line with general safety criteria. 

Finally, a site survey will help you ensure that you are using a warehouse or distribution centre to its maximum efficiency. This is because site surveys factor in racking design layout to ensure maximum use of the storage space/cube of the area.

When it comes to navigating the space, a materials handling site survey can also provide you with information on the safest pathways and doorways you can use when moving stock around the space.