Warehouse & Distribution Center Layout Certificate Course


Certificate in Warehouse & Distribution Center Layout

Learn techniques for outstanding facility planning and efficiency.

A well-planned warehouse layout will help you reduce operating costs by improving warehouse processes and inventory control. This self-paced, online certificate program was developed by the professional engineers and consultants at Richard Muther & Associates, internationally recognized for their contributions to industrial facilities planning. All techniques presented are field-proven and derived from successful implementations. Case exercises are adapted from real situations and projects.

  • This course delivers comprehensive, hands-on training in Systematic Layout Planning (SLP) – the world’s most structured approach to layout and facilities planning.
  • In addition to lectures, you will learn by doing, with over 100 pages of worksheets and case exercises. Guided by a leading authority on warehouse/DC layout, you will practice diagramming and quantifying material flow. You will learn how to chart and diagram all the closeness relationships in your layouts.
  • In addition to layout planning, we will cover site location and selection as well as relocation and installation – everything you need to plan and manage a successful project from start to finish.
  • A dozen case problems adapted from actual projects and situations will assure your ability to apply what you have learned. Each session includes a short self-test with page numbers where answers will be found

Here’s a partial list of the many specific things you will learn:

  1. Four phases and three fundamentals of every planning project.
  2. Five key inputs that you must have to make great plans.
  3. A simple six-step method for planning small facilities and areas.
  4. Four classical ways to lay out a storage facility – and the conditions favoring each.
  5. Five critical decisions (and 17 options) when planning your order-picking methods.
  6. Nine conditions that favor external, goods-to-person picking.
  7. Five conditions that favor automatic picking machines; and 6 that favor robotics.
  8. Eight factors to compare when selecting order-picking equipment.
  9. Ten intangible considerations when choosing an order-picking method.
  10. A dozen factors to consider when selecting your storage and material handling methods.

In addition to instructional videos with detailed notes, you will also receive:

  • Supplemental readings on: AS/RS, AGVs, conveyors, sortation, truck docks.
  • A 60-item outline for specifying automated storage & retrieval systems.
  • Supplemental reading on supply chain network modeling.
  • A Warehouse Move Checklist with 130 tasks already loaded into Excel.
  • Seventeen useful working forms ready-to-use in Excel.
  • An 80-item checklist for saving storage space.


Lee Hales, Richard Muther & Associates

Lee Hales, President, Richard Muther & Associates, is an internationally recognized planner of manufacturing and distribution facilities. Formerly operations manager for a distributor of industrial supplies and service parts, Mr. Hales has completed consulting assignments for a wide range of industries in more than 20 countries. His clients include Crown Equipment, The Container Store, Delta Air Lines, Lands’ End, Nokia, Motorola, General Motors, Nutro Products, Sony, and many others. The author of two books on industrial planning, Mr. Hales is a graduate of the University of Kansas and the Massachusetts Institute of Technology.

Group Discounts

If your company would like to send several employees to this workshop, please contact professionalprograms@ku.edu to discuss a group discount option.

Course Delivery

This online class will be delivered using the University of Kansas online learning management system. Each lesson has video recordings and PDFs for note-taking. Most lessons are followed by a short quiz. There are also layout exercises through which the instructor will guide you. Each exercise is followed by copies of the instructor’s answers.

The instructor can be directly contacted via email with any questions about class content. He will respond within 2 business days.

You have four months to complete the course.

Certificate Requirements

The certificate is awarded after completion of all quizzes. Participants must attain a minimum of 75 percent for the entire course. The full certificate course is equal to approximately 24 classroom hours of instruction and assessment. The certificate will state that the recipient has earned 2.4 Continuing Education Units (CEUs) or 24 Professional Development Hours (PDHs). However, the course does not carry any college credits and cannot be used as part of a degree seeking program.

Refund and Cancellation Policy

No refunds will be granted for this class once the student has accessed the Blackboard class site. A full refund of registration fees, less a $30 administrative fee, will be approved if requested in writing at kupce@ku.edu prior to accessing the course. Requests must be made within 60 days of payments.

Contact us

Have questions about the workshop? Are you interested in having all or portions of the training presented at your office? Please contact professionalprograms@ku.edu.

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