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The Five Most Common Mistakes When Planning a Distribution Center by TriFactor's Craig Bertorello and featured in Supply & Demand Chain Executive (online).  


Seven Factors to Consider When Choosing an Order Picking System by TriFactor's Richard Gillespie and featured in Industrial Distribution (online).


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Material Handling Case Study- Volvo - Auto Industry Distribution

Company Description

Volvo Parts North America, a division of Volvo Trucks North America, is based in Greensboro, North Carolina. As part of the Volvo Group, Volvo Trucks North America employs approximately 5,000 people. Volvo Parts North America employs 33 people in the Jacksonville, Florida distribution center, supplying truck parts, engines and cabs for Volvo commercial dealers throughout Florida, Georgia and eastern Alabama.


Volvo Parts North America made the decision to move its operation and employees from Atlanta, Georgia to a larger distribution center in Jacksonville. In looking for a material handling equipment provider, Volvo Parts North America required a company that could smoothly integrate new pallet rack and shelving equipment with existing equipment, primarily pallet racks and shelving from other facilities. The project also required a relatively short timeline.


auto parts distribution

Working with Volvo Parts North America, TriFactor had to determine how to best utilize Volvo’s existing equipment (pallet racks and shelving) and integrate it with new equipment seamlessly.

TriFactor also reviewed the provided layout plans throughout the facility, accommodating the pallet racks and shelving Volvo Parts North America needed to achieve its capacity goals and distribution efficiency objectives.


During the assessment, TriFactor met with the Volvo personnel, the architect, general contractor, and fire marshal to alter the material handling equipment layout, accommodating for building obstructions, capacity requirements and desired efficiency standards. The use of customized pallet rack equipment and high-bay automotive shelving with captive aisle rail guidance required a high degree of design and layout accuracy. Once completed, the system would allow Volvo Parts North America to use pickers at high elevations, maximizing pick efficiency with little risk of storage equipment damage.


High Bay Industrial Shelving

The TriFactor team completed the project on time and on budget in June 2006, allowing Volvo Parts North America to make full and effective use of the facility. TriFactor integrated new and used equipment seamlessly, leaving Volvo with a facility that appears to be constructed using all new equipment, a significant challenge whenever both new and used equipment is introduced into a project. Volvo Parts North America was pleased with TriFactor’s proven capabilities, service and reliability. As a result, when additional material handling projects present themselves in Jacksonville and other facilities throughout the country, Volvo Parts North America will continue to look to TriFactor to recommend, design and install new material handling equipment.


36 months.

Download a copy of the Volvo auto parts distribution material handling case study

System Summary

Volvo Parts North America

TriFactor Provided:
Engineering Layout Review and Modification
On-Site Project management / Coordination with GC & Other Trades
Used equipment Evaluation and Integration
Customized Pallet Rack Equipment
High-Bay Industrial Shelving w/ Captive
Aisle Rail Guidance

175,000 Square Feet

Facility Type:

Products Handled:
Truck Parts, Engines and Cabs

Markets Served:
Volvo commercial dealers in Florida, Georgia and Eastern Alabama

Completion Date:
June 2006

Products Utilized:
Pallet Rack
High Bay Industrial Shelving
Floor Mounted Guide Rail
Plastic Shelf Bins