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3 Tips for Efficient Warehouse Management

The warehouse is the backbone of your business - if it is well-organized, efficiently operated, and audited, you’ll be able to operate very efficiently and reduce potential costs, but if it is disorganized, badly managed, and doesn’t operate at full capacity, you’ll see cost-overruns, unfulfilled orders, and much more - if things get bad enough, your badly managed warehouse might result in your business losing all its value proposition and cost advantages. That’s why it is so important to learn about supply chains, warehouse management, and auditing to ensure you are operating soundly. Warehouse management is far from easy, and you won’t learn it by just reading a single article, but this article will give you a few tips that you can apply right away to more efficiently operate the warehouse. 

#1 Make Efficient Use of the Warehouse Space

Not making efficient and judicial use of the space in your warehouse will not only force you to use more space and move to larger warehouses quicker, but it will also make transportation less efficient and require more employees to handle the warehouse. That’s why efficient use of warehouse space is one of the most important things that you should pay attention to constantly. There are a few strategies you can use to make efficient use of the warehouse space:

  • Keep a lean inventory: which items are in great demand? Which items are rarely used? By keeping a lean inventory with essential items and JIT inventory management you can really reduce the space required. 
  • Use specialized containers and storage options: what kind of items and products are you storing in the warehouse? Is it easy to store and move them around? You need to use specialized storage options designed for the items and products you usually deal with. For example, racks for tyres is essential for auto-related warehouses. 
  • Reorganize the warehouse often: as products and items get transported often to the warehouse, you and your employees might not have the capacity to organize everything in time - it is natural for things to get hectic after a week or two. That’s why you need a sweeping clean up and reorganization every so often to keep the warehouse lean and organized. 

#2 Collect as Much Data as Possible 

Collecting data on your warehouse will help you learn where you can save money, where you can optimize your processes, and much more. Without adequate data covering your warehouse operations, you’ll be essentially blind and unable to make any long-term decisions. 

So, you have to collect as much data as possible and analyze to find out important data about the warehouse: which operations take the most time? Which items often run out? Which items go unused? These are all important questions you can answer with data. 

#3 Pay Attention to Your Employees 

Employees present the largest running cost for most warehouses - that’s why employee management is one of the important tasks that you need to pay attention to. You need a multifaceted approach considering multiple aspects to succeed: 

  • Hiring process: it all begins with the hiring process - if you don’t hire the right people for the job, you can scant make any improvements in performance later on. That’s why you need to create a robust hiring process with a focus both on their performance and their character. 
  • Employee efficiency: constantly checking and rechecking the efficacy of the employees is important - if you somehow manage to squeeze more productivity out of your existing employees, you won’t need to hire more people as your business grows larger.