About VSE Aviation

VSE Aviation is a well-positioned company in the aerospace industry that supports customers with both maintenance, repair and overhaul (MRO) services of components and engine accessories, as well as aftermarket parts distribution and supply chain management. Their primary focus is to support their customers by keeping their aircrafts flying responsibly and safely.

The company’s global distribution network includes warehouses in the US and Singapore with more than 10,000 part numbers and 1+ million items in stock.

Headquartered in South Florida, VSE Aviation provides services and parts for Commercial, Cargo, Business / General Aviation, Military / Defense, and Rotorcraft customers globally.

VSE Headquarters

The Situation

VSE Aviation has been achieving a constant high annual growth rate over the last years and in order to maintain it’s excellence standards in a highly competitive market, they needed to keep up with the high volume demands from customers. For this reason, VSE decided that by expanding their facility and optimizing their operations, they would be equipped to provide customers with industry-leading distribution services with an even greater scale to support growth.

Objectives for the New Material Handling System

After identifying VSE Aviation need for expansion and concerns for increasing their storage capacity, Atlantic Rack identified the following objectives needed to be accomplished in the new warehouse facility:

  • The company wanted increased capacity; “we needed to be able to receive, process, scan, and ship more parts faster”.
  • VSE needed to elevate customer service standards; being able to provide better lead times to customers and proving their commitment to “delivering the utmost quality products and services to loyal customers on time”.
  • Future Expansion. Taking into account the growth that the company has had in the previous years, they had to foresee a promising future, adapting a space with the potential to expand from 51,000 sq. ft. to 100,000 sq. ft. in a not very distant future.
  • The solution had to be suitable for an eCommerce hand-picking operation, due to the fact that the company stocks multiple and very small pieces that have to be carefully picked by operators.

Proposed Solution

After visiting the new Warehouse facility, analyzing the customer needs and taking into consideration the objectives which needed to be accomplished for the project, Atlantic Rack proposed VSE Aviation a very conventional but efficient pallet racking system operation.

Considering the fact that this had to be a hand-picking operation, the proposed solution was setting up 8 foot high selective pallet racking systems with only 24″ deep bays, so pickers could reach parts from both side of the row lanes. Since VSE stores small parts only in this facility, there was no need for pallet deep racks. We were able to fit 290 bays of selective pallet racks in the space provided.

Two aisles where left open for parts selection purposes and a main aisle divided the whole floor layout so pickers could save time moving around the warehouse.

The rack layout was setup in a condensed form since no forklifts where part of the operation. Only two aisles were left with space enough to operate forklifts.

Shelving units were installed close to the docking doors so pickers could drop the parts for packing purposes. Also this space could be useful for receiving pallets and unpacking merchandise.

A very significant feature of this layout is that the 8 foot high selective racks might seem small for such a high warehouse, but this was made purposely for the future expansion. A mezzanine will be installed in a very near future to make a second floor with the exact same layout, allowing VSE to double their storage space and maximize operations when the time comes.

Proposed Layout

VSE Floorplan Layout