Towards the end of each year, many manufacturing businesses enter a period of high demand. For some, such as those manufacturing packaging, the run up to Christmas drives greater need for their products. Others may be working hard to meet year-end production targets. Sometimes, peaks in demand are completely unpredictable and unexpected when they arrive.
Meeting the challenges of peak demand for your materials handling operations requires careful preparation, and the right lift trucks. Here are five ways to get ready to step up for peak season with Hyster.
1. ASSESS YOUR EXISTING FLEET
As you come into your peak season, take a look at your existing fleet and make sure you have the right lift trucks and other materials handling equipment to cope with increased operating requirements. Remember to also consider if you have enough batteries for electric lift trucks, and attachments if you’re handling non-standard loads, such as bales of cardboard or reels of paper.
Hyster Tracker wireless asset management can be enormously helpful in analysing how you’re utilising your fleet. For example, you may find some lift trucks are being under-used, and this will give the capacity to cope with an uptick in demand without expanding your fleet; or, via the mapping functions, you may be able to identify ways to minimise vehicle movements on larger sites, helping improve efficiency and better manage a more hectic workload.
2. ORDER YOUR HYSTER® RENTAL FORKLIFTS
If you are short on capacity, you may need extra lift trucks to keep up. However, you will only need to expand your fleet temporarily, so purchasing or leasing trucks for the long term could be costly, and unnecessary. Instead, now is the time to talk to your local Hyster dealer about the trucks they can offer on a short-term rental basis.
Our trusted Hyster distribution partners offer a range of different trucks on a short-term rental agreement, including electric forklifts, IC forklifts, warehouse equipment, and big trucks. Trucks with attachments, or other tailored options to meet your specific needs, are often also available for hire. Such as those with added pedestrian awareness options, like lights or cameras, or with the addition of Hyster Tracker telematics. Hyster dealers can also offer different length rental contracts, depending on your business requirements.
3. CONSIDER HYSTER USED TRUCKS TO MAXIMISE BUDGETS
Not every task demands a new lift truck. In some cases, a quality, used or refurbished Hyster lift truck will meet your requirements. Where a truck is only intended for occasional use, such as during peak times, new equipment may not be needed. Selecting used Hyster forklifts may prevent your business from investing in something more than you really need, better suiting your budget. In some scenarios, this means a used truck can be purchased and kept on site, ready for whenever peaks hit, including those that arrive without warning.
Trucks purchased from www.hysterused.com are also often expertly refurbished by Hyster dealers, helping to offer the performance and dependability needed at the right price.
When it comes to managing seasonal peaks, used equipment is also available right away, with no factory lead times to consider. This can get an additional truck added to your busy fleet quickly, helping maximise operational productivity, and in turn, profitability.
4. PLAN AHEAD FOR PARTS, POWER, AND MAINTENANCE
During peak times, your fleet will often be under pressure to deliver more. Shifts may be extended, and trucks may be working longer hours. This requires extra consideration for powering up your machines. Fuelling intervals for IC trucks or charging times for electric trucks may need to be timetabled more frequently, and in such a way to maximise operational uptime. If using lead acid batteries, your operation may need to think ahead and obtain additional batteries to provide the power needed to keep truck movements running.
Preventative maintenance can also play a key role in uptime during peaks, when the last thing you need is unplanned downtime. Be sure to check that inspections and audits are completed before peak season and engage with your Hyster dealer for advice on any upcoming service requirements. Though Hyster parts are available fast from your official dealer, you may also want to consider if there are any wear parts that you could stock up on in advance, to remove potential stress on your operations further down the line.
Remember, if your fleet uses Hyster Tracker wireless asset management, this can also provide helpful data to predict maintenance ahead of time.