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What is VLM in Warehouse Management?

Efficient warehouse management is critical to the success of businesses that need to store and move inventory. After all, if you can’t deliver products to your customers in a timely manner, they will become frustrated and move on to your competitors who are more responsive. Sometimes it’s necessary to think outside the rack to improve your processes – and choosing vertical automation is a great way to do that.

A vertical lift module (VLM) uses a vending machine concept to help businesses store and retrieve their products. A VLM is sophisticated technology that automates the warehouse management process to improve picking efficiency, inventory management and space utilization.

How VLMs Work

Using a series of automatically rotating trays, operators can retrieve items by inputting simple commands into the attached terminal. The VLM internally rotates its trays to the correct position, extends the tray to the operator and designates the requested item using a visual aid.

Space Benefits of VLMs

  • Several aisles of shelving can be combined into a single unit

  • Used in high ceiling spaces, can help recover up to 90% of floor space previously utilized

  • May reduce the need for multiple storage facilities

  • Can be completely customized

Retrieval Benefits of VLMs

  • Includes visual aids to show which item was requested: automatic laser pointer, alphanumeric LED bar and put-to-light

  • Increases the number of order lines

  • Aids in order fulfillment accuracy

  • Reduces labor requirements

VLM Configuration Options

There are many different options when it comes to designing and installing VLMs to meet your unique needs:

  • Height

  • Tray width

  • Single or multi-column design

  • Internal or external bays

  • Single or dual delivery

  • Tray payload up to 2,200 pounds

  • Slim designs for smaller spaces

  • Accessories

At Lynch Material Handling, we help businesses in a wide range of industries assess their storage and retrieval needs to determine if a VLM would be appropriate. Our goal is to help improve efficiencies by utilizing vertical space – all while keeping within budgetary constraints. We have installed VLMs in Colorado (manufactured by Modula) for many clients with great success. If you’re ready to take your warehouse management to the next level (literally), contact us at (303) 466-2317 or visit our website to request a no-obligation free quote.

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