Heartland RV will soon move its dealer parts into a single warehouse to help increase efficiencies.
The company currently ships dealer parts from two warehouses in separate Indiana cities, and warranty parts ship from a third location. Jim Fenner, Heartland’s vice president of customer service and quality, said the company has been working to move into a singular parts warehouse for about a year.
“Progress is slow, but it is the world we are in right now,” Fenner said. “Ideally, I would already be in the building.”
Heartland purchased the building while it was still occupied in 2020. This delayed refitting the warehouse to the company’s needs until late April.
The building is nearly ready to receive Heartland’s dealer parts, according to Fenner. The VP said he hopes the new location will be fully occupied in January. He attributed the delay to back orders and materials.
The new warehouse will have conveyers to speed the fulfillment process and enough space to house all parts inside the building. The current warehouses have height restrictions and unnecessary redundancy in parts, Fenner said. In addition, the warehouses do not allow for larger parts storage.
Fenner said bringing all parts under a single roof will increase the team’s efficiency in filling orders and will allow Heartland to grow from 7,200 SKUs to 12,000.
“Before, we had to house all our long metal all outside,” Fenner said. “When you are dealing with 36 feet of metal, bringing it into the building and then packaging it, then bringing it back outside to exchange for another, you are very, very inefficient.”
All warehouse employees will be part of the fully automated warehouse management system. The system will provide efficiencies such as mapping the fastest routes in the warehouse to provide order fulfillment.
“We are pre-packing all our parts as it comes in to reduce damage, reduce pack time,” Fenner said. “As soon as it comes in, we are putting it in a box so we can put it on a shelf and just grab it to ship it out.”