One of the most important things to organize well when it comes to providing quick and accurate shipments is your warehouse management. In order to minimize the time necessary for loading and unloading products and to provide easy access to every single item stored, you really have to take into account many elements.
Since the importance of running a truly efficient warehouse is so great, we’ve prepared the most important tips that should help you reconsider the way you run a warehouse or simply assist you when it comes to providing a more streamlined running of business.
Don’t Be Afraid of Modern Technology
Warehousing has greatly benefited from the developments in modern technology. No modern warehouse is now without a warehouse management system (WMS) or an enterprise resource planning (ERP) with a strong WMS module, which are able to recommend the best routes and methods for collecting or putting away items.
Also, your employees can use mobile devices to help them stay on top of everything that’s going on. Another benefit is that you greatly reduce the amount of paper, which is helping both the environment and your budget. Barcode or radio frequency identification (RFID) readers will not only help you minimize mistakes when it comes to the transaction, but it will also lower the frequency of picking errors.
Human Factor Should Be Taken Into Account
If you’re not quite satisfied with the plans generated by the WMS, you shouldn’t shy away from designing them manually. If you have sufficient experience, you can analyze the way you use the material or decide to keep your high-volume items close to the front of the warehouse to reduce travel time.
Another tip is to store items often sold together close to each other. That’ll help you streamline operations by reducing the time and effort necessary to pick such items.
Making the Most of the Space
When trying to maximize the available space, many people first look at the option of expanding the footprint. This is normal and logical, but we should also consider using vertical space better. Taller storage units may require purchasing new equipment able to handle material at greater heights, but such investment should be paid off relatively quickly.
With a wide range of modern industrial pallet racks available now at affordable prices, there’s no need to rely on the same racks. Now you can consider various options to provide the most economical solution for storing items of different sizes and weights. Another thing you might want to consider is using standardized bins to keep the whole place neat and tidy.
Workstations Can Help a Lot
All the tools and equipment that your employees need for work should be kept at workstations, so that everyone can easily find what they need. Naturally, the workstations should be kept in order, standardized and located in a way that ensures the most efficient use of what they offer. All employees need to do their best to prevent any cluttering at workstations, since that increases the chances of errors and reduces safety.
The rule that applies to homes applies to warehouses as well, and should be even more strictly enforced in such an environment. That means no unnecessary items should ever be present in the warehouse. You should keep only the stuff you need and nothing else.
One of the things you might do is decrease or eliminate safety stock. Instead, try to organize more frequent shipments or smaller quantities from suppliers. That should help you reduce a number of items you keep in the warehouse, thus leaving more space to offer to clients.
Although many tips related to creating a really efficient warehouse rely on modern products, common sense is still the most important element that should guide every decision you make. Some solutions may require more of your effort, but in the end, they should all bring about great benefits.