Making the switch to slip sheets was “a big challenge” in Ernst’s words. New equipment, finding the right slip sheet, and employee training were needed.
ICI Paints has a liquid product, shipped in fiberboard cases (4 gallons to a carton) and in plastic 5-gallon buckets. The combination of the plastic buckets on a plastic slip sheet led to too much shifting in transport. A custom slip sheet was designed to meet the needs of shipping the 5-gallon product.
Initially, employees were concerned about being slowed down. Forklift operators have to be more careful, and Ernst found that it takes more time to load a truck when goods are on slip sheets, but the cost is not overwhelming. “ICI has not had to hire any additional employees due to slipsheeting, but does pay more overtime at peak times,” he says. The transition to slipsheets was not a major issue according to Ernst. “Using the slipsheeting equipment is not complicated; it just takes getting used to.”