3 Easy On Your Pocket Ways to Improve Warehouse Efficiency

One might ask, why should I put efforts into improving the efficiency of the warehouse when there are thousand other demands to be met? Well, why would you not if it means quicker deliveries, more satisfied customers AND increased profits?

All the big players like Amazon and Zappos have created a niche for themselves by relying on accurate and on-time delivery of their products.

But don’t they use the same shipping methods like everyone else? Well in fact they do! So it stands to reason that it is their extremely well-engineered warehousing, a step before shipping that gives them an edge over others.
Therefore, an efficient warehouse is crucial for a successful distribution company
 
Yes! it is as easy as that. So, if you are looking for ways to improve your warehouse processes, you might want to consider the following points.
 
Where to start?

You cannot improve something that you have not analyzed. It is important to gauge if you are using your available resources to the fullest. Ask yourself what can be done to maximize the efficiency of your warehouse. Though different strategies work for different companies, here are a few factors that will help you figure out a workable plan for yours.
 
The Factors That Affect Your Warehouse Efficiency
 
Some of the factors that impact your warehouse efficiency are:

* Operating Procedures
* Warehouse Layout
* Equipment
* Picking

1. Operating Procedures

An ideal operating procedure which leaves no room for errors and lapses is difficult to achieve as a lot of external factors like availability of items and procurement from vendors are at play. Yet, if it is planned well, it will increase the effectiveness without having to invest in new equipment or the layout of the warehouse.

2. Warehouse Layout

To get an easy access to the goods and for optimum space utilisation, a smart layout is imperative. It could be something as simple as a methodology to keep fast moving items on easier to reach places.

3. The Equipment

Everything from the cabinets and ladders to the carts and lifting tools are all equipment that can decide the capacity of material management of your warehouse. Though updating your equipment will result in an increased efficiency but it may also cost a lot and that is not always an option.
 
4. The Picking Process

The Picking Process is the most relevant process to the retailer as it is the only one that is in most control of the retailer. It forms as much as 60% of the operating cost of the warehouse. Interestingly, it is also the one that most impacts the customers, the end users. It is no secret that the Customers around the world expect their orders to arrive within two to three days of placing an order. A bad picking job could mean unhappy clients and increased financial burden caused by having to send an order twice or having sent a faulty order. If such lapses can be avoided it would certainly be beneficial for both the company and the customer.

Therefore, our blog series in three parts will determine how you can improve upon the picking procedure without spending too much and hence increasing the efficiency of your warehouse.

Look out for the following in the coming parts:

Part I: Storage Strategy: Determining The Locations Within Your Warehouse Where Products Are Stored.

Part II: Routing Strategy: The Sequence By Which Items Are Collected From Storage Locations
 
Part III: Order Batching: The Clustering Of Customer Orders In A Single Order Picking Route

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Happy Warehousing!!