Are your warehouse processes effective and efficient? Have you had trouble with your procedures recently? How are your warehouse staff coping with the enormous amount of work needed there? Many people automatically think that those in the retail and hospitality sectors carry the brunt of the sacrifices of ordinary workers. Warehouse jobs are much more complex and exhausting than any other type of work in the industry of retail and manufacturing. Forget about pesky customers. That’s nothing compared to boxes of merchandise you somehow cannot find and a storage facility that’s full to the brim with unsellable items.
The organization of your warehouse speaks of the organization and success of your actual business. When your warehouse is a mess, your business operations are a mess, too. It’s easy to forget that these two aspects should work hand-in-hand because they in separate buildings—sales happen in stores while the warehouse takes care of all the backend procedures. When was the last time you made improvements in your warehouse process? Three years ago? Don’t you think it’s high time to upgrade such processes considering the vast power of modern technology now available?
Upgrade Your Warehouse Management Software
If you are still using a warehouse management software from five years ago, then it’s no wonder your competitors are getting ahead of you. You need to upgrade the software you use to manage the warehouse. There are a lot of options out there now. Chances are that you are using a version of the software that cannot be integrated with a mobile app or does not generate real-time inventory reports. You need a warehouse management program that integrates into your main business management software. The SAP Business One software has eCommerce integration, which makes it an effective way of monitoring sales and inventory.
Establish Advanced Receiving Notification
When is your next shipment supposed to come? Your warehouse accepts shipments regularly from the suppliers. The problem is that even the most well-run warehouses still encounter hiccups once the shipment arrives. Where should they store the new boxes? Should some of them be shipped to the shop? Delays happen and they always disrupt the process. What you can do is establish an advanced receiving notification so the supplier will alert you for possible shipment weeks ahead.
Do Comprehensive Labeling
Be obsessed with labeling the boxes and products. If you’re labeling the condiments in your kitchen, why shouldn’t you do the same for your inventory? Every product coming in and out of the warehouse should have labels. Every shipment arriving and department the warehouse should have proper descriptions, too. The label should have the product name, description, other details, and arrival date and time. For perishable items, this is even more critical.
Use a Barcode and RF Technology
Gone are the days when you have to manually label the boxes. Although it helps to see on the labels what each box contains, labeling them with barcodes will help minimize the amount of work that needs to be done. The barcode will have all the necessary information you need to identify what’s in the boxes, as well as where it needs to go. The use of barcodes and RF technology is the most effective way to streamline the process in a storage facility.
Look into the Benefits of Using Robots
Soon, warehouses will be fully operational by using only robots. Humans won’t need to operate machines to go to the other end of the warehouse to find an item. Robots can start making warehouses more organized and their processes more efficient. This is already starting in many bigger warehouses. Imagine what it can do to small- and medium-sized businesses that do not have the resources to hire as much manpower as larger corporations do. This is a possible gamechanger.
Invest in Mobile Technology
Wearables such as trackers and mobility tech such as hoverboards will make work easier in the warehouse. Not only should you think about streamlining your warehouse processes, but you should also care about the well-being of your staff there. When you do, they can do amazing things such as manage and organize the storage facility more efficiently. A lot of work has to be done in the warehouse—from storage to labeling to shipping. The more people feel better about their jobs, the more they know their employers care about them, the more likely they’re going to help make the processes flow better.
A modern and streamlined warehouse should have the right technology. Investing in technology when it comes to your business is a no-brainer. You simply have to pick the features of the technology for your business’ immediate and future needs.
Glenn has been gifted with an incomparable aptitude for computers and cursed with the humor of a prepubescent male. With the curiosity of a young boy, Glenn is relentless in his pursuit of the latest hardware and software tools around the world.