One of my companies was undergoing a rapid growth spurt. Sales increased 500% in one year. All the internal systems and processes were experiencing severe growing pains. Warehouse space was at a premium for both finished and unfinished product. An internal plant Kaizen team was formed to deal with the need for more space.
Everyone on the team had different ideas for maximizing the square footage of the warehouse but most of it was in a two dimensional mode or length times width of the storage. It was not until an As Is process mapping occurred, and all materials storage practices were examined, that the team considered the height of the storage materials or all three dimensions length, width and height. When we brainstormed this, we soon discovered that we could greatly increase our storage utilization by just safely stacking materials and finished goods higher. We actually did a small model of the To Be warehouse layout to confirm our findings.
This greatly decreased the amount of new warehouse needed to support the sales growth spurt.