Businesses all over the world rely on warehouses and distribution centres to hold their stock and transfer it all over the world. Working in a warehouse is hard work and because of this employee productivity needs to be at its best all year round. Hot summer conditions can really put a strain on productivity as warehouses and distribution centres are known for heating up and becoming difficult to work in.
In extreme temperatures errors can start to happen meaning productivity declines and safety becomes compromised. Cooling down your warehouse becomes a priority when this starts to happen. We have put together a few points that you can use to help cool your warehouse down and increase employee productivity.
1. Hydrate & Take More Breaks
When the temperature starts to warm up you need to make sure you increase your water intake as well. Make sure you always have a water bottle on hand and sip from it constantly. Staying hydrated will make you feel slightly cooler not to mention helps you avoid heat stress. It helps to freeze a bottle the day before work so that you have an ice cold drink all day.
It is also important that you take breaks more often than normal. Working in hot conditions lowers mental awareness meaning more accidents can happen. Take breaks in a shady or cool area and make sure you continue drinking during this time. Try to avoid drinking energy or sports drinks as these can act as a diuretic making you lose water you actually need. If you do start to feel the affects of heat make sure you tell a supervisor or manager straight away and seek a cool place to have a break in. It is important to avoid heat stress as much as possible as it can become life threatening.
2. Cool Down with Fans or Air Conditioning
Ideally you want to keep the warehouse or distribution centre as cool as possible. Air conditioning is a great idea however is not always able to be used throughout the whole warehouse. If you can’t use air conditioning everywhere in the warehouse it does make a big difference if you can use air conditioning in a main area, somewhere that employees can feel a difference in temperature and cool down. Installing an air conditioning unit will really help make a difference, alternatively you can use portable system.
Fans can also help make a big difference. There are large special fans you can install that help to cool your warehouse down without creating too much ‘wind’ but more of a breeze. Smaller fans can also make a difference in main traffic areas.
3. Use Strip Doors and Partitions
If you are lucky enough to have air conditioning or some sort of cooling system in your warehouse you will want to make sure it stays in your warehouse. Don’t try and cool down everyone else's warehouse because you don't have proper seals and doors. You also don’t want to let hot air into your cool warehouse due to the extreme temperatures outside.
Strip doors and curtains are perfect on doors or walkways that are frequently used. These allow for easy access for staff and machinery without letting cold air escape. They will also stop dust and debris from coming into your warehouse which means less general tidying for your staff.