Fork Truck Free is Lean and Starts with Reduced Walk Time According to Vecna Robotics

According to Vecna Robotics, walking the plant floor or distribution center adds zero value; value is only achieved at work locations, never between them. Poorly designed operations have pickers walking more than ten miles a day on the floor increasing errors, injuries, and declining productivity.

Fork truck free environments do not eliminate all the walking but allows a dramatic and quantifiable reduction in the walking “commuting time” to collect and retrieve product. Inefficient designs make work difficult, less efficient, and is certainly not lean.

Mobile workstations brought to the work are perfect for kitting and assembly at the cellular level. By reducing the time spent walking from docks and picking areas for labels, purchase orders, checklists, and other documents, workers spend more time working, improving throughput. From a shipping dock to a printer at the other end of the building, there could be 3,000 steps.

The lean value proposition with a conveyor workstation ensures what is needed on a regular basis is available on a regular basis, either at-hand or just a few steps away. FMCG (Fast Moving Consumer Goods) 80/20 rule means those products used frequently are readily available. Most operations can start with this in good shape, but as processes and inventories shift, SKU proliferation creates a poor workflow.

Anytime manufacturers can reduce cycle time to improve balance with takt time and ultimately free up a person, there will be savings. Similarly, reducing machine setup time and reduce lot sizes and inventory carrying cost, it generates savings.

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About Vecna Robotics

Vecna Robotics offers a fleet of intelligent, next-generation autonomous guided vehicles (AGVs) to optimize logistics and material handling operations. With two decades of experience developing advanced systems for medical and military operations, our case picking, goods-to-person, person-to-goods, robot-conveyor hybrid material handling systems are the most cost-effective in the market. Vecna Robotics is dedicated to helping companies, ranging from Fortune 50s to SMEs, reduce costs, improve throughput, and stay flexible and competitive.

Vecna is also dedicated to corporate citizenship and has donated more than 170,000 hours of community service and pays team members to spend up to 10 percent of their paid work week on a community service project. For more information visit or contact  


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