Designing a Warehouse for John B. Sanfilippo & Son

Tom Zosel Associates designs and project manages total material handling solution for producer of edible nuts

Tom Zosel Associates designs and project manages total material handling solution for producer of edible nuts

Chicago — June 7, 2006 — Nut company John B. Sanfilippo & Son has tapped Tom Zosel Associates for the design of a new warehouse facility and to select warehouse management system (WMS) for the new facility.

JBSS's principal activities are to process, pack and market edible nuts of all kinds. Headquartered in Illinois and with several distribution facilities from coast to coast, John B. Sanfilippo & Son, Inc. recently acquired a new facility to consolidate existing operations currently housed in several locations in and around its main hub in the Chicago area.

This new headquarters houses both manufacturing and distribution operations. TZA focused on the design of the distribution operations and the orderly transition from the existing facilities into the new location and subsequent ramping of the business.

Developing Best Practices

Starting with a review of JBSS's materials flow and handling processes in major functional areas, TZA developed a set of client-specific distribution best practices that constituted the basis to design the most appropriate layout for the new distribution operation, both from a functional and from a return on investment perspective.

The study included the determination of the correct type and quantity of picking fixtures to achieve the best balance of order fill productivity, minimized replenishment and best space utilization. A slotting strategy determined which product lines should be co-located to provide JBSS with increased putaway, replenishment and picking productivity.

TZA also assisted JBSS in creating a full request for proposal (RFP) for material handling equipment for the new layout and project managed the installation of the different systems, the move plan, as well as the slotting of all items.

Selecting the Solution

Also, as part of the WMS definition and selection process, TZA identified the functional requirements through an analysis of how the product needs to be picked, packed, stored and shipped and provided JBSS with ongoing support from technical requirement specification to product evaluation and final vendor selection.

Once a WMS vendor was selected, TZA provided guidance to ensure the software was implemented successfully, on time and on budget. Additionally, TZA helped with the definition and selection of business integration software to facilitate the communication between the newly acquired WMS and existing enterprise resource planning (ERP) systems.

"Moving several facilities into a new facility can be a considerable challenge", said Jasper Sanfilippo, executive vice president of operations of the company. "An ineffective plan could increase costs, negatively impact customer service and jeopardize growth. It is of utmost importance that the transition does not affect our customers. We chose TZA for their extensive experience and strong track record in comprehensive move planning and project management, and they have not let us down."

Additional Articles of Interest

— Thinking about automating your warehousing operations? Take a strategic stance with this helpful guide: "The Analyst Corner: Warehouse Management," in the April/May 2006 issue of Supply & Demand Chain Executive.

— What are the skill sets that will catapult your supply management group to its peak performance? For a guide to help unlock their potential, read "Building a Better Supply Chain Professional" in the April/May 2006 issue of Supply & Demand Chain Executive.