Siemens Reaps the Benefit of Consolidation to Reduce Storage Costs

Siemens helps customers in the industrial, infrastructure and construction sectors succeed by providing complete electrical, engineering and automation solutions. Through a commitment to innovative engineering that goes back more than 150 years, Siemens serves the world's largest and most respected companies through integrated solutions, software, hardware and services.

The Mission

As part of their 2009 strategy to reduce their operational footprint and overall expenses, Siemens Industry USA ("Siemens") elected to close an outside storage facility and bring their inventory storage back in-house. McGee Storage & Handling, Inc. ("McGee") was selected as the preferred vendor partner for Siemens Energy & Automation, to design a new small parts storage solution within their current manufacturing and assembly plant which serves as a ready-supply to the assembly floor.

The project objective was the result of 2009 cost-cutting efforts. Operational facilities were analyzed for opportunities to consolidate, thereby reducing the number buildings and space required to produce the same output within their manufacturing and assembly operations.

The Challenge

The primary challenges for this project were three-fold: First, to move parts storage from a separate warehouse and incorporate it into existing manufacturing and assembly areas, while simultaneously reducing the storage space to the smallest foot print possible. Second, design considerations mandated that the new storage area be separated and safely secured from the rest of the plant. No construction or remodeling investments would be considered. Lastly, implementation of the solution could not disrupt normal production shifts. All work had to be completed after-hours and on weekends to prevent disruption to manufacturing and assembly operations.

The Solution

The Storage and Material Handling Solution tailored by McGee, was designed to be the least obtrusive and most secure and safe as feasible. The McGee team consulted with project engineers and facility management representatives to propose alternative system designs for consideration. The final solution incorporates a number of material handling products to meet the challenge, including:
  • Very Narrow Aisle Pallet Racking was chosen to maximize storage capacity within a much smaller footprint
  • Flush Fit Wire Decking was implemented to enhance labeling capabilities Insert
  • Wire Guidance was tied into the existing system to accommodate the existing Turret Truck
  • Rack Guarding was added to enable man aboard order pickers safe access to all rack levels
  • Modular fencing was added to fully secure the new storage area
  • Safety netting was included on the back of the racking to assure that no product could potentially fall onto plant personnel below
  • Privacy Netting was attached to the fencing to provide a visual barrier to the stored inventory
  • A pre-existing Powered Gate was re-engineered to move in the opposite direction than the current gate configuration.

The Results

This tailored solution demonstrates why clients place their trust in McGee to design and implement a multi-faceted system within tight parameters and constraints. McGee successfully designed a storage system to safely secure parts inventory within a high production site, thus maximizing use of a single space for multiple purposes. Siemens succeed in reducing their overall operational footprint and expenditures in 2009.

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