Warehouse management is important to get right. Maintaining efficiency and control over its place in the supply chain can help avoid a lot of headaches. Without the right practices in place, business operations and production will fall apart, causing real problems for your business.
With that being said, here are five of the best practices for profitable warehouse management.
1. Switch to a digital form of data entry
If you’re still tracking inventory with pen and paper, then you might be doing your warehouse team a real disservice. Particularly with all the technology that’s in existence now, it’s good to take advantage of inventory management systems.
This software is used in a range of industries from retail to hospitality. Your warehouse can benefit from the many features it has to help keep your inventory organized as well as managing your workforce on a daily basis.
Inventory management systems can fulfill most of your operations needs from inventory checking, daily reports and data analysis to name but a few. All of which can make catering to your clients a lot easier as a result.
2. Keep an eye on your costs
Cash flow can be a real problem for a lot of businesses and it often comes from a lack of organization. In fact, 82% of small businesses will fail due to poor cash flow management or a poor understanding of cash flow.
Besides ordering in goods and dispatching them to your customers, you’ve also got to consider all the other outgoings you have that include operating costs, equipment, storage, etc. By keeping a watchful eye over your costs, it can help manage the cash flow of your business so that you avoid getting into any trouble.
If you or your employees are having trouble keeping control of the costs, then getting a financial management system in place can be handy too. Quickbooks is a popular platform for managing business costs and can contribute to widening those profit margins for your warehouse.
3. Encourage workers to keep their areas clean
Even though it’s an obvious point to make, not all employees will have the same attitude when it comes to cleanliness in the workplace. It’s something that will likely require training for all your workers to understand the importance of keeping their surroundings neat and tidy.
Cleanliness is something that is important especially within a warehouse environment. You may have bigger equipment like forklifts that need to navigate down the aisles and if there’s something blocking their route, it causes disruption.
A messy environment can also lead to employee unhappiness and a lack of productivity. According to a workplace organization survey done by Brother at your side, 1 in 4 said messy colleagues have a negative impact on their own productivity.
By keeping your warehouse floors and surfaces clean of rubbish and clutter, it can help keep the flow of work moving along.
4. Introduce electronic advanced shipping notifications
Logistically, developments in the warehouse can have a negative impact on the shipping schedule. In order to avoid things like this happening in the future, it can be helpful to implement electronic advanced shipping notifications.
This is a system that helps by providing a notice with any purchase order or inventory management functions. It helps the team members better their plans when it comes to fulfilling an order or transport.
It’s a great way of letting your clients know the progress of their shipment before it’s left the warehouse. Communication within business is essential and it’s key to helping keep your clients happy with your services.
Advanced shipping notifications can be a great way of going the extra mile for your customers and making sure they’re kept in the loop at all times.
5. Improve safety and security protocols
In a warehouse, there can be many dangers both obvious and perhaps not so obvious. It’s why it’s important to provide your staff with a detailed on-boarding process. By doing so, your employees know what could be a safety or security risk to them and to others.
Improving your safety and security protocols can help avoid any employee lawsuits for injuries in the workplace. There’s nothing like overkilling your warehouse with all of the necessary warning signs that help keep your employees safe.
In terms of security, training your staff to keep the premises secure at all times will ensure the business isn’t left vulnerable outside it’s operating hours. Any operations staff should be giving a tour of the building, how to open and close it up, etc.
Implementing these practices when it comes to your warehouse can help ensure the business continues ticking over. There are many important areas to warehouse management and these are just a handful of tips to focus your attention on.
6. Use cycle counting instead of performing full inventory checks
It is completely understandable as to why a full inventory check is needed. After all, inaccuracies can be a considerable danger to the organization and affect the bottom line and logistics all around. It can be a disastrous domino effect. However, there is a better way of doing inventory checks, and that is by having a warehouse inventory cycle counting process. Instead of painstakingly taking physical inventory, you would sample a group of items and take inventory of that section only.
Author Bio: Natalie Redman (LinkedIn). Email – [email protected]. Freelance writer for many clients across multiple industries. Natalie has two years of copywriting experience. Natalie has a wide range of experience copywriting for web pages for businesses across many industries. She’s also an owner of two blog websites and a Youtube content creator.