Guide to an Effective Warehouse Racking Layout

The defining line between the classification of a warehouse that is efficient and one that is not, is in the operations department. The racking layout will impact on the efficiency of operations, from stock control through to order dispatch. In order to correctly plan a racking layout there are 3 Golden Rules to keep in mind.

3 Golden Rules of an Effective Racking Layout

Prior to any planning sessions for the layout of the racking, there needs to be a clear understanding of the desired outcome of the racking layout. For most warehouses this can be broken down into flow, accessibility and space.


The definition of flow in the operations department is the continuous movement of goods, equipment and people throughout your warehouse.

A primary objective is to decrease the amount of high traffic zones. To do this the staff members locations for each task are to be as close as possible to the tasks before and after it. Goods that the staff require in carrying out the tasks will need to be as close as possible to the workstation.

The next objective to achieve is the minimising of movement and interruptions to staff as much as possible.

Warehouse Flow


All products within the warehouse need to be accessible by staff in the operations. This means that a product shouldn’t required to be moved in order to access another one.


To maximise the warehouse space consider the following:

  • Inventory,
    • How much inventory will be stored?
    • Size of the inventory
    • Receiving and dispatching zones of inventory
  • Office areas, and
    • What is the location of the operations staff members office and desk areas?
  • The racking and storage areas.
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