The workstation cart on site may still have a few years of life but may have lost its functionality as workflows have changed with new technology. Over the years the more modern warehouse, distribution center, factory or large retail operation has added more tools which require power. Computers (including laptops), printers, scales, barcode scanners and other small electronic equipment soon take up more space than originally planned and requires power to either operate or receive a charge.
Over time the workstation accessories and equipment which were meant to improve productivity actually can become an impedance. Extension cords for power and recharging multiple devices may be simple enough but there are too many steps wasted each day in the process. It may be time to re-evaluate the workstation carts on premise and think again about prioritizing productivity and safety.
While mobile workstation carts have become a standard piece of equipment in hospital nursing units today, traditional companies which rely on old-fashioned "man-power" vs. technology are still catching up. Adding an on-board battery to the workstation cart can handle up to four devices simultaneously for 8 to 10 hours of normal use. Adjustable shelves hold up to 75 pounds each. Accessories and shelves can be added to fully upgrade the cart.
The question about which is the best to upgrade a workstation cart for the new workflows and equipment can be answered more easily when using a checklist.
Here is a checklist for upgrading your workstation cart:
- Does the power pack offer a long battery life that ensures a good workflow vs. hindering it?
- How long does it take to recharge?
- Does it have a meter that provides the status of the battery and confirmation of the power source?
- Does it offer a visual or audible alert when the battery requires recharging?
- Are there side handles and cord reel holder for easy handling?
- Does it have a bracket system to secure the unit to a workstation cart, vehicle, or other surfaces to ensure safety at all times?
- Ease of use.
- Does the workstation cart offer easy access to “on” / “off” computer switches?
- Is the workstation easy to plug into the equipment residing on the cart?
- Can it be easily unplugged from the equipment on the cart as well?
- Are the adjustment mechanisms easily understood and user friendly?
- Is the workstation cart lightweight?
- Does the workstation remain steady and handle the weight well?
- Is the cart easy to roll on and off carpeting?
- Does it roll easily on bare floors, on and off elevators and onto loading docks?
- Is the cart easy to maneuver down hallways and in & out of tight work spaces?
- What are the maximum and minimum height adjustments available?
- Are these adjustments able to meet the needs of the workplace?
- Are the adjustments easy to make?
- Are the adjustments solid and do they stay in place?
- When changing the staff, how easy are adjustments to make for different users?
- Are the surfaces smooth with minimal crevices to avoid trapping dirt?
- Are they easily cleanable with recommended cleaning agents?
- What are the actual dimensions?
- Will it fit easily through doorways?
- Will it maneuver easily around the storage areas and aisles?
- Do the wheels lock?
- Are the wheels easy to lock and unlock?
- Is the cart sturdy and stable?
- Will the workstation cart adjustments stay in one place?
- How likely is the cart to tip over?
- Is there an electrical wire management system on the cart?
- Does the cart offer sufficient workspace beyond simply holding the computer, server or laptop?
- Is the surface well lit for low lighting work spaces?
- Is there enough work surface for documentation and misc. supplies?
- Does the cart have extra storage space?
- How convenient is the location of the keyboard?
- Is the keyboard adjustable?
- Are adjustments easy to make?
- Is there enough space to comfortably enter data?
- Is the keyboard well lit for low lighting environments?
- Can the monitor be viewed easily?
- Does the monitor stand or bracket tilt?
- Is the monitor adjustable for height?
- Is it large enough to accommodate viewing at a distance?
- What is the maximum distance for good viewing?
As you review the checklist, you will find the carts and power packs as the most viable solution to either upgrading your current workstation carts, adding new carts or replacing the old with new mobile carts with power. Here is a partial list of accessories.
At the center of the solution is the PowerPack Portable Power System shown in this video:
Upgrading workstations to make them mobile with power offers an opportunity for dramatic labor savings with improved productivity as the workstations eliminate unnecessary foot travel and paperwork.
- Work stations have power on-board for access to anywhere a cart can roll; powers computers, printer and peripherals
- Save time and steps spent gathering printouts and computer data
- Sturdy swivel casters make mobility a breeze
- Use anywhere remote power for electronic activities is needed
- Many accessories available for keeping keyboards, hand scanners, CPU's and printers securely loaded yet out of the way
If you are ready to evaluate the productivity of your workplace, you can configure your existing workstation, download the Upgrade Checklist in a pdf format here.