GENERAL WAREHOUSING TERMS

 A | B | C | D | E | F | G | H | I | J | K | L | M | N | O | P | Q | R | S | T | U | V | W | X | Y | Z

A

Access Space

An aisle used to gain access to facings, slots or stacks.

Active Block

A uniform block after one or more elements have been removed, i.e., a block that is being worked.

Address

A number, or a combination of numbers and/or letters, used to designate a particular warehouse location facing or slot.

Aisle

Any passageway within a storage area.

B 

Back-Order

An unfilled request for issue of warehouse stock.

Bale

Compressible articles or material assembled in a shaped unit and usually bound with cord or metal ties. under tension. May be wrapped in paper or textile material or combinations thereof.

Bill

See Invoice.

Bill of Lading

A document by which a transportation line acknowledges receipt of freight and contracts for its movement.

C

Column

Two or more units tiered on top of one another.

Crate

A rigid shipping container of framed construction joined together with nails, bolts, or any equivalent method of fastening. The framework may or may not be enclosed with sheathing.

Cross Aisle

A passageway at right angles to main aisles, used for the movement of supplies, equipment and personnel.

Cross Stacking

The placing of a layer of containers at right angles to those just below to increase the stability of the stack.

Crossdocking

The acquiring of commodities by a distribution center using just-in-time scheduling, so that products can be moved from the receiving through staging, and onto a transport vehicle without ever having to be put away.

Cube Utilization

The ratio determined by counting the total cubic feet of materials stored in the warehouse and expressing this number as a percentage of the total cubic dimensions of the warehouse.

Cycle Count

The systematic counting of a portion of the total inventory on a periodic basis, such that all inventory lines are counted and reconciled in the course of a complete fiscal year.

D

Dock Leveller

A hinged bridge between the dock surface and different load bed heights of vehicles. Levellers automatically adjust to different vehicle heights and the rise of vehicle springs as it is unloaded.

Drive-In Rack

A structural framework open at the front and blocked at the back by cross bracing. The shelves consist of rails connected to the uprights. Warehousing units may be placed two or more rows deep by entering the rack from the front and driving the fork lift truck between the rails. Careful consideration should be given unit clearance requirements, both vertical and horizontal.

Drive-Through Rack

Similar to drive-in rack except that the cross bracing is distributed across the top of the rack structure, thus permitting the fork lift truck to drive through the rack structure from one side to the other.

Dunnage

Any material, such as boards, planks, blocks, or metal bracing, used in transportation and in storage to support and secure supplies, to protect them from damage or for convenience in handling.

F

Fire Aisle

A passageway established to aid in fighting or preventing the spread of fire or for access to fire fighting equipment.

Fixed Slot

A slot reserved for a specific stock keeping unit.

Floating Slot

A slot that becomes available for any stock keeping unit just as soon as it is empty.

Floor Slot

Space occupied by a column or stack in a block.

H 

Honeycombing

Condition resulting from the withdrawl of warehousing units from a uniform block, producing an active block.

Horizontal Occupancy Ratio

Ratio of exposed floor space in the occupiable space to floor space occupied by warehousing units.

Horizontal Separations

Space consumed by pallets in a column or unit clearances in racks, bins and shelves. Also space consumed by beams, rails shelves or other horizontal supports.

I

Inventory

1) The aggregate of all commodities in stock at a given time. (2) The quantity of a given commodity on hand at a point in time. (3) Also used to describe the function when the stock is counted and reconciled.

L

Let Down

Handling a unitized load from its position in the stack or storage rack down to a location where partial withdrawals can be made.

Lot

A stock keeping unit that must be stored apart from other like stock keeping units. Multiple lots of the same stock keeping unit produce excessive honeycombing of the storage space unless the lots are large. One of the hidden costs of warehousing.

M

Main Aisle

A passageway wide enough to permit the easy flow of equipment, supplies, and personnel; it generally runs the length of the building.

Minimum Inventory

The amount of stock on hand that has been designated as safety stock.

O

Occupiable Space

The space remaining in the warehouse for storing warehousing units after allocating space for service aisles, access aisles, and other utility space.

Occupied Space

Occupiable space actually occupied by warehousing units or other warehousing elements.

Order Picker

A warehouseman assigned to the function of making withdrawals of warehousing units.

Order Processing Time

The amount of time, determined by the inventory manager, needed to carry out all of the steps of issue and reconciliation of merchandise.

P

Packaging

A preparation of a commodity for distribution or bulk packing in quantities suitable for filling a carton with a prescribed number of units.

Packing List

A document that itemizes in detail the contents of a particular package or shipment.

Pallet

A rectangular support for unitized lots. Subject to standards of length and width for storage in predetermined places. Construction is such that there is air space between the bottom of the pallet and the load bearing surface of the pallet sufficient to allow the insertion of lifting forks of a pallet truck or forklift. Pallets may be constructed of wood, steel, plastic, rigid paperboard, or aluminum; and may be subject to demurrage charges or disposed of as scrap. In some cases carriers will require equal exchange of serviceable pallets.

Pick Line

An arrangement of SKUs in some orderly system to facilitate selecting or picking warehousing units to satisfy orders.

Q

Quarantine Stock

Stock being withheld from normal distribution due to product recall, inadequate documentation, contamination or other good reason.

R

Rack

Wood or metal framework upon which units or unitized loads are placed.

Rack Unit Clearance

Space allowed for handling clearance between warehousing units stored on a shelf in a shelf rack, between the warehousing unit and the up rights or on either side of the warehousing unit and the uprights in a drive-in or drive-through rack.

Rack Slot

The position occupied by a warehousing unit in the rack. The slot may be one or more units high, or one or more units deep. Rack slots may be fixed or floating. Fixed slots are usually located at the first and second level. Using modern stock picking lift trucks, all slots can be fixed slots. The advantage of the stock picker is that you can substitute moving up and down for travel distance, a fact that is often verlooked in evaluating stock picking trucks.

Re-warehousing

The practice of rehandling lots already in storage in order to make room or consolidate lots. Re-warehousing is a continuous process that involves handling due to the manner in which withdrawals are made from lots. Re-warehousing also occurs in making letdowns from the upper rack tiers or stacks to facilitate making withdrawals. One of the major hidden costs in warehousing.

Receiving Report

A form used by the receiving unit to inform others of the receipt of goods purchased.

S

Scrap

Commodities that are deemed worthless to the owner and are only valuable to the extent they can be recycled.

Shrinkage

Back door losses and losses by issue error.

Spot

The placing of a truck or boxcar where it is required for loading or unloading.