4 Great Ways to Improve the Efficiency of Your Warehouse

Your company can have an amazing product line and a crack sales team but if you can’t fill orders quickly, you could be losing a huge percentage of repeat business. Returning customers are the single most effective way to build your bottom line but the fact is, most customers are simply unwilling to wait an inordinately long time to receive their shipment. If you are looking to grow your business, expedite those orders! These 4 great ways to improve the efficiency of your warehouse can help you do just that.

 

1. Automated Inventory Control

 

If an order reaches the warehouse but the product is unavailable, there will be a long delay in processing that order for that customer. Automated inventory control keeps everything in a central database so sales teams know not to sell what isn’t there. In fact, automated inventory control communicates to the purchasing or manufacturing department when quantities are getting low, which in turn may help alleviate this problem altogether. As product gets low, more is ordered or manufactured to keep inventory at acceptable levels.

 

2. Effective Use of Warehouse Space

 

Many warehouses aren’t making effective use of the space they have. This means from corner to corner and from floor to ceiling. However you choose to sort your merchandise is up to you but it should be set up in such a way as to make the quickest moving products easy to pick. Fast moving merchandise, according to OSHA, should be stored at heights near waist level so as to avoid stress injuries on workers’ backs. The easier it is to pick and lift, the quicker your orders can be shipped.

 

3. Digital Signage to Keep Teams on Task

 

Another of the ways in which you can improve efficiency is with digital signage. These are visible throughout your warehouse and in an instant floor managers can see who is doing what and where. Teams can see the shipment they are working on and details about the shipment they will be filling next. With digital signage every member of every team, including management, will have a visible display of what is happening in real time.

 

4. Implement a Well Trained Quality Control Team

 

This is where quality control comes into play. All the automation and technology in the world simply can’t take the place of human intelligence and so your quality control team should be divided into several layers. One team will stay on top of inventory while another inspects the efficiency at which orders are picked and loaded. At the head of those teams is one team leader who coordinates all efforts from keeping track of inventory to the final inspection of packaging as it goes out the door. Quality control not only tracks quality of the merchandise and packaging but also all processes to make sure they are completed timely and within safety regulations.

 

The key takeaway here is that through the combined efforts of technology and human intelligence, any warehouse can run much more efficiently. These 4 great ways to improve the efficiency of your warehouse will give you the best of both worlds, resulting in a much happier and loyal customer base.

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