I have several years of experience in supply chain and logistics modeling helping clients who have large warehouses and distribution centers. These models are often very large (thousands or tens of thousands of locations), which can be very time consuming to model. I’ve found the old adage to be very true: “Necessity is the Mother of Invention”, so I developed a ProModel App that is used from within AutoCAD which enables us to quickly build the graphical portions of the model using OLE automation. This capability is also very useful when experimenting with several different layouts.
The types of Warehouse / DC modeling questions that can be answered include:
- Slotting questions – where should my SKUs go?
- Racking questions – which type of racking is best (flow rack, bin shelving, single pallet deep, double pallet deep, drive-in racking, etc.)?
- How high should our racking go 5 levels, 7 levels, etc?
- Which material handling devices are best – narrow aisle, forklifts, single/double/triple pallet jack, reach trucks, side loaders, clamp trucks, electric/propane/natural gas, etc.?
- Staffing questions – how many of each type and when?
I recently gave a webinar on this topic which you can view here
The requirements for using the app include:
- Current AutoCAD drawing
- AutoCAD not AutoCAD Light
- Know where each location is physically on the drawing
- Location levels 2-X should be mapped to the level 1 location
- Build indexed location file in the order you plan to add to the drawing
- Know which material handling device accesses each location
If you would like to discuss this further, or have other ideas that can help us all improve warehouse and distribution center modeling, please comment below. Thanks and Happy Modeling!
Thanks, Steve Courtney