The best way to run a warehouse is to have an efficient plan to store and ship items as they are needed. Also critical is making sure that you can efficiently manage a warehouse without damaging inventory or compromising safety. Below are some proven tips to help you run a smooth operating warehouse.
Good Placement First
One of the most important principles to operating a smooth running warehouse is knowing exactly where to place your inventory. Optimally, you will want to stock your highest volume inventory as close as possible to the staging area. Also, you’ll want to store your low volume inventory in the further possible location from the staging area. With proper inventory placement, you can greatly reduce labor cost and decrease your fulfillment time. Also, it will be easier for you to track your inventory by having all of your high volume inventory in an easy to access location. It is recommended that you regularly update your inventory’s performance so you can move the higher volume stock closer to the staging area.
Automate The Process
These days, it has become easier than ever to automate the management of warehouse inventory. Inexpensive tools such as RFID tags and barcodes will make it easy to track inventory as it moves into and out of the warehouse. Additionally, automating warehouse management will greatly reduce fulfillment errors and other mishaps. Though a quality Warehouse Management System (WMS), the entire automation process can be easy to manage for employees and supervisors alike.
Maintain A Stable Temperature Around Sensitive Materials
Chances are, every warehouse has inventory that is sensitive to radical changes in temperature. And the larger the warehouse, the more difficult it will be to manage the temperature of specific inventory. Warehouse temperature tools such as drum heaters can help manage the temperature of specific pieces of inventory. Drum heaters are used by many warehouses to protect critical materials, improve viscosity and flow of liquid inventory and allow for the even distribution of heat.
Reduce Barriers to High Volume Stock
One of the biggest issues with warehouse management is dealing with barriers that stand between inventory and the staging area. As stated before, it is important to store the highest volume inventory as close as possible to the staging area. It is also important to create high traffic routes to maintain an uninterrupted path between your fastest moving inventory and the staging area. Another pro tip is to create two shipping areas: one for priority shipments and another for non-urgent shipments.
Prevent Problems Before They Happen
A warehouse has a lot of moving parts from conveyor belts to plastic wrapping machines and forklifts. A breakdown with any of these piece of equipment can cause a warehouse wide slowdown. Therefore, it is important to perform routine maintenance on all equipment in the warehouse. That also include warehouse containers and shelving that can be prone to wear and tear.
A properly run warehouse can add serious profit to the bottom line. By creating an efficient inventory storage strategy, fast shipping routes, inventory protection, and equipment maintenance, you can have a warehouse that will run like a well-oiled machine.