Whether you have one or one thousand forklifts in your operation, these tips will help you lift your game and gain your company some palatable results.
In all businesses, efficiencies can be found in every operating area. At the heart of the Toyota Production System is a value we call Kaizen, or continuous improvement. To produce the best outcome all processes must eliminate waste and improve efficiency. Sounds simple enough, right? Let's see how you can apply Kaizen to your fleet.
Communication between all facets of your operation will help establish a clear line of accountability. Simply keeping a service log for your machines will assist all stakeholders in obtaining information about the current condition of the machine, upcoming service intervals, and also who has been responsible for the servicing so far. This allows for communication between the technician, operator and management, all of which assists in keeping your equipment in optimum running condition.
Highly trained operators will make fewer mistakes and are more likely to increase workplace productivity. A higher level of 'forklift IQ' and smoother operating will also assist in better fuel efficiency and cause less damage to equipment and your goods.
Fleet management software will help you get a better overview of your operation. Toyota offers 'I_Site', the world's leading on-board forklift fleet management system. I_Site enables you to view data regarding operating costs, truck condition and operation behaviours among many other parameters. Providing real-time monitoring helps to reduce costs and improves health and safety outcomes. It also helps to manage drivers, with swipe card or keypad log-in functionality meaning you can observe the performance and operational behaviours of individuals on the warehouse floor.
Using genuine parts and having your vehicles serviced by a manufacturer-endorsed workshop can assist in long-term running costs. Aftermarket parts or third-party service technicians may offer a lower price point, but you need to also ask yourself whether the quality is compromised. There is nothing that will perform as well in your truck than a part developed by the company that builds them!
Yes, we know that this is the fifth and final tip on this list, but safety as a priority is undoubtedly the easiest way to be efficient. Safe practices can sometimes also be the most efficient practices as complicated operating techniques are usually the most hazardous. Keep it simple, keep it safe. Seat belts, hard hats and high-vis vests are an easy way to maintain a healthy operation. Without looking after the health and safety of your drivers and your machines, there is no operation.