Williams

Williams is a trade-only plumbing and heating merchant with 39 trade counters and regional fulfilment centres across the South East, Manchester, Milton Keynes, and Bristol.

Williams

Background

For nearly 50 years Williams has been dedicated to providing plumbing and heating engineers with the best products, at the best prices, with the best service. In recent years, including 2019 and 2020, the company has been recognised by the London Stock Exchange as one of the UK’s 1000 most inspiring businesses. They provide a same-day delivery service across much of Mainland UK and were recently listed in The Sunday Times as an inspiring business and one of the Best Companies to work for in the UK in 2019, 2020 and now in 2021.

Williams

Brief

Due to rapid growth, Williams has embarked on expanding their Milton Keynes regional fulfilment centre to become a second distribution centre. This required significant reconfiguration and additional pallet locations to be added to the site. Locators came recommended by Williams’ fit-out supplier, Jaden Aden, an interiors specialist with whom they work in partnership. Williams recognised Locators as industry leaders and were happy for them to engage with the project.

Given our background as an independent supplier, we were able to source the same make of racking that they currently use on-site. This helped ensure continuity – which is a must for projects that require reconfigurations. We soon learned that they not only wanted to reconfigure their racking system but wanted to convert their existing fleet of reach trucks into articulating forklifts. This might have come as a shock to some businesses, but we have over 35 years of experience with these types of project. Therefore, we were more than willing to put forward suggestions and offer up our relevant expertise.

Williams

Solution

We surveyed their central distribution hub in Milton Keynes and examined how best to improve their storage capacity. Their sizeable expansion into the next-door premises already greatly helped matters. We then recommended switching to narrow aisle racking to maximise storage. This would also accommodate their new fleet of articulating forklifts. Once we reconfigured their existing racking and provided more narrow aisle racking, Williams had more space to work with. In preparation for the opening of their second distribution centre, Williams transferred stock into the optimised area – leaving them free to make their five-star service even better.
Williams

SEMA Rack Inspection

Prior to the reconfiguration works, Williams requested we carry out a SEMA rack inspection. An inspection would ensure that their current racking was safe for re-use and was not in any way damaged. During the inspection, our fully qualified inspectors picked up on a few minor issues. We confirmed the specifications with the manufacturer and rectified these during the reconfiguration. Our team ensured Williams’ system was fit for purpose and the correct loading information was displayed. After successfully finalising their expanded distribution centre Locators were asked to complete the same work at their other 39 sites within the business. This way, we could aid them by increasing their storage capacity and performance, whilst ensuring safety.

SEMA Trained Rack Inspection & Rack Inspection Training

Disregarding the maintenance of racking equipment could prove fatal. However, a SEMA trained rack inspection will help dispel any potential disasters. HSE recommend that staff perform a self-assessed rack inspection once a week. A SEMA rack safety awareness course will show both you and your staff how to conduct routine, regular internal inspections. That way you can ensure your racking facilities remain compliant with health and safety rules.

Rack Storage Systems Pallet Racking

Adjustable Pallet Racking (Narrow aisle, depending on FLT)

A flexible system where the beam heights can be adjusted for storing different sized product. Our standard adjustable pallet racking (APR) provides access to every pallet. Better yet, it’s the lowest cost system for pallet storage. When used in narrow aisle applications, it can provide a high number of pallet storage locations.

“We were very happy with the work Locators has completed at our new central distribution centre. We found them flexible and easy to work with and we have been impressed with what they have done. We have invited them to work with us going forward, helping us achieve a greater storage capacity and productivity at our other 39 sites, whilst ensuring our staff’s safety.”

Martin Brown

Operations Director, Williams