Eight questions to ask before selecting a mobile storage solution

Posted by TAB on

Going mobile?

Mobile storage is an amazing space-saver that makes the lives of records managers and staff a whole lot easier. When storage, access and security become big enough issues, it’s rarely a question of whether to go mobile, but how. As in, how quickly can we get it installed?

No one wants to rush into a decision about an investment that will last many years, and mobile shelving certainly falls into that category. There are so many different kinds – each with their own unique advantages and features – that it requires some careful planning to make sure mobile shelving is done right.

To help you do that, TAB offers a free Mobile storage buyer’s guide that walks you through the many factors to consider when choosing a mobile storage solution. For most organizations this is an invaluable first step before bringing in an expert like TAB to help you with the layout and installation.

8 questions to ask

As the buyer’s guide points out, it helps to start with a bit of fact finding. Answering the following questions will help you hone in on the mobile shelving solution that best addresses your requirements in terms of capacity, access and security.

1. What do you need to store? When evaluating your storage needs, keep in mind that mobile shelving is a versatile solution capable of storing much more than just file folders and binders. Our installations have been used to store everything from artwork to golf bags, so don’t hesitate to include a wide variety of items in your mobile shelving wish list.

2. How much capacity do you need now, and in the future? Some types of mobile shelving are more suited than others to expansion. Having a sense of your long-term needs will help you select a mobile storage solution that can grow with you.

3. What needs to be secured?
Mobile shelving offers plenty of ways to secure your stored records, from the entire room itself, right down to the individual shelf.

4. How much space is available in the room? This is a big factor in capacity, but you might be pleasantly surprised how little floor space is required to accommodate a high density mobile shelving unit.

5. How heavy are the items?
Mobile shelving units can handle everything from 500 to 1000 lbs per linear foot. It’s critical to have an idea of the expected load so you don’t end up with an under-strength solution.

6. What shape is the floor in?
The degree of level and the particular flooring type are also important. Some mobile shelving styles are better suited to uneven or softer floors.

7. How many staff will need regular access to the shelves? As a rule of thumb, most organizations prefer to have one aisle for each active user in the space.

8. How important are aesthetics?
In customer-facing environments you don’t always want to have the contents of your shelves on display! Many mobile shelving units provide simple and elegant ways to hide the shelves from view.

With these answers in place it will be much more clear which mobile shelving solution will work best for your organization. There will also be less risk that you’ll end up with the wrong solution for the long term. In a future blog post we will explore the various types of mobile shelving units to help you with the next step of the decision.

Next Steps

  • Download the Mobile storage buyer’s guide for a detailed walk-through of these essential questions and a guide to the different types of mobile shelving.
  • Need a hand? Talk to a TAB representative and get help determining the mobile shelving solution that best addresses your needs today and in the future.


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