Bespoke Picking Tower Increases Capacity by 371%

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One of Scotland's leading distributors of PPE equipment has transformed their Livingston facility's space utilisation and efficiency by increasing storage capacity by 371% and dramatically improving pick speeds thanks to Thistle Systems' Bespoke Picking Tower.

Thistle Systems


Increase in Capacity

In same floor space

Thistle Systems


Linear meters

Storage Space

Thistle Systems


Max Load Capacity

to racking section

Capacity and Picking Speeds Transformed in PPE Distribution Warehouse

With the warehouse almost bursting at the seams with products on pallet racking, the client was at a point where it had to make a change and were considering additional premises.

After carrying out a site audit and discussing SKUs’ stock profiles and turnover, Thistle developed a revolutionary design that transformed the warehouse using their Max the Cube approach.

By designing a bespoke Multi-Tier Picking tower that met the stock profile of the SKUs that were smaller in size or volumes stored, Thistle could virtually eliminate the dead space in the pallet racking that was having a majorly negative impact on capacity.

Thistle’s approach maximised the available height in the warehouse with a high-density two-tier storage solution that featured a customised shelving profile to suit the client’s exact requirements with heights, widths and lengths of shelves configured to optimise utilisation.

The Multi-Tier Picking Tower accommodated all of the small items, the single items and the broken pallets that were causing major storage challenges.

A section of pallet racking with timber decking capable of storing up to 650kg of uniformly distributed weight was integrated into the picking tower to accommodate the bulky but low volume SKUs taking up valuable space on pallets racking.

As the client was looking to introduce a new IT system to improve operations in the business, Thistle organised a site visit to one of the UK’s leading specialist ecommerce distribution centres.  This allowed the client to see the cutting edge approach to picking it had installed to work with their new picking tower Thistle had installed the previous year.

The result was a new approach to picking and a bar code system to integrate with the client’s new IT system, which enabled the company to dramatically improve picking speeds and accuracy – meaning it could achieve greater throughput with the same staff level.

And most remarkably, Thistle designed and executed a project management schedule that enabled the entire system to be installed in a live warehouse, experiencing the highest levels of demand it had experienced in its 30 year history.

What we did

  • Bespoke multi-tier picking towerBespoke multi-tier picking tower
  • Transformed space utilisation in the warehouseTransformed space utilisation in the warehouse
  • Created 761 linear meters of storage spaceCreated 761 linear meters of storage space
  • Combination of industrial shelving and pallet racking with timber deckingCombination of industrial shelving and pallet racking with timber decking
  • Integrated pallet gate to allow products to be easily moved to 1st floor level Integrated pallet gate to allow products to be easily moved to 1st floor level

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