With businesses rapidly growing worldwide catapults the need for more warehouse and distribution centers. But while you’re on the hunt for the perfect and nearest warehouse space, it is important to know and learn more about the different ways you can maximize your space effectively and efficiently.
There’s absolutely no question that managing a warehouse space today is complex and a lot more challenging than it looks. In fact, managing day-to-day warehouse operations effectively is vital to any company’s success, and in this day and age, businesses have to stay competitive by making and putting cost-efficient solutions into place fast and easy. With that, here’s a good read about five simple steps to increase warehouse efficiency while also reducing unnecessary and unwanted costs:
Step 1: Make The Most Out Of Your Available Space
As mentioned, different types of businesses are booming globally; hence, the need for more space. While you’re at it, try to look for different ways you can maximize and optimize all available space within your facility. Instead of impulsively adding space through square meters to your entire operations, perhaps you still have some open, unused spaces if you happen to look vertically. This additional space may just save your business from unnecessary expenses lashed out on unnecessary expansion.
To make the most out of your available space, add taller storage units with all the right equipment to pick, place and store goods that can definitely help you keep the same (or even more) storage in the same square footage or horizontal aspect. Also, you may want to revamp your storing processes and techniques as storing goods and other materials inefficiently can significantly cause you quite an amount of space. Rather than using the same racks all throughout your facility, you can try to incorporate different variations of shelving that caters and houses different types of materials. Through this, you’re slowly maximizing your space – both vertically and horizontally – and making enough space for even more items!
Step 2: Adopt New Technologies
Today, technology continues to develop and advance at such a rapid rate. Over time, technology keeps getting better, making human lives and tasks a lot more manageable. In the warehouse industry, adopting new technologies is a must. More than it being a must, it’s also one of the most cost-efficient and effective actions you’ll ever take!
Adopting warehouse technology, such as a warehouse management system or WMS, allows you to improve warehouse operations efficiency as it helps and suggests the best possible routes to take and methods to perform in picking or packing orders away. Besides that, a handful of warehouse management systems also has automated pick lists that are sent directly to mobiles and other devices to help reduce or eliminate errors, delays, and damages. If your warehouse could talk, it’ll definitely thank you for all these adjustments you’re making. Not only will it make operations more organized, but it also obtains a neater and greener environment.
Step 3: Train Your Employees
If your warehouse management system doesn’t help in generating more efficient workflows and picking or dropping processes, then create them manually through your staff. All warehouse concepts, operations, tools, strategies, and techniques needed to successfully manage and operate a warehouse were never discussed at home or in school, which is why this is the perfect time for you to grab the opportunity of training your workers and educating them further about modern warehouse concepts, equipment, and strategies so as to improve overall warehouse efficiency.
Step 4: Set Par Levels
Manage your warehouse inventory and stocks more efficiently by setting “par levels” for each item. Par levels refer to the minimum amount or range of a product on-hand. Setting par levels prevents businesses from ordering too much goods only for these to end up as surplus that don’t sell like hotcakes. Once an inventory or stock reaches either close or below predetermined levels, then you’ll know it’s the right time to replenish. Setting par levels is just like adopting lean inventory wherein you only take what you need, nothing more, nothing less. With this, you have to [possibly] reduce or completely eliminate safety stocks while trying to get suppliers to deliver smaller quantities more frequently.
However, you have to take note that par levels vary and differ for each product and season. While conditions, demands, and season change every now and then, make sure you check up on your par levels all year round so as to determine whether or not they still make sense and help with your inventory management.
Step 5: Organize Work Stations
Organizing work stations has got to be the simplest way to increase warehouse efficiency. An organized workspace ignites productivity and allows workers to have an easier time searching for the right tools or equipment. An effective way of organizing work stations include the use of the “5S” method, which consists of: sort, set in order, shine, standardize, and sustain. All these are designed to keep all clutter at bay, enabling warehouse employees to move along seamlessly, reduce errors, damages, and delays, improve safety and organization.
Improving warehouse efficiency does not solely revolve around studying and knowing modern concepts, tools, equipment, and strategies. Such steps or ways mentioned above are already considered a good start in improving one’s overall warehouse operations.