News: Press Coverage

Warehouses Test New Workflow Standards for Covid-safe Conditions

DCVelocity   |   May 8th, 2020

As economy restarts, business may adopt lessons from “essential” supply chains that kept running during shutdown.

As businesses begin to plan a “restart” after weeks of shutdown during the Covid-19 crisis, some companies are looking at supply chain operations for lessons on how “essential” sectors have continued to operate throughout the pandemic while keeping workers safe.

Throughout the pandemic, delivery trucks and distribution centers have continued to run at full speed in order to deliver critical supplies of groceries and medical equipment. To support their work under those strained conditions, many firms have applied new processes to balance workplace safety and warehouse efficiency.

So when broader sectors of the country begin returning to work, they may find that familiar warehouse workflows have changed in order to protect material handling workers from coronavirus infection. For example, in an effort to reduce the number of “high touch” surfaces workers contact during the day, more warehouses may adopt keyless ignition for forklifts, according to Chris Wolfe, CEO of asset management solution provider PowerFleet Inc. Instead of requiring lift truck drivers to exchange physical ignition keys before and after every shift, they could just tell workers to wave their employee access cards at a wireless receiver on the vehicle. The process works in a similar way that visitors use key fobs to enter locked office buildings or dormitories.