Whether you own an online store or manufacture products, the warehouse is an integral part of your business. Since it’s on the supply chain, an operational mishap may have a ripple effect on subsequent stages. Ask big shots in the industry and they’ll tell you that efficient inventory systems are essential in warehouse management. With tons of goods entering and exiting your premises, you need to keep track of them. Otherwise, you’ll always find deficits that can’t be accounted for. This in turn leads to massive losses to your company. Read more to know the 7 Tips for Warehouse Inventory Management.
Do you feel like your space is too small? Before you find a suitable place to relocate, why not utilize whatever is at hand to the maximum? With a little more organization, you might be surprised at how much your store can hold. By effectively managing your inventory, accessibility of items improves therefore saving time. You can retain customers since they can depend on your timely deliveries. Additionally, you’ll be able to stock up depending on the laws of supply and demand in the market. If a particular product is on demand, you increase its quantity. On the other hand, you’ll tell suppliers to cut back on slow-moving items.
If you aren’t sure where to start, relax! We are here to help. We’ll discuss 7 strategies that will improve your warehouse inventory management system.
- Readjust the design
The layout of the warehouse can either enhance or drag business operations. The crucial part is the receiving area. When suppliers deliver your orders, ensure the reception point has adequate space. If it’s cramped, items are mixed up hence causing confusion. One might also think that goods were lost only to find them later on.
Depending on the nature of products, construct appropriate storage facilities. For example, perishables require cold rooms while toxic substances need to be stored far from foodstuffs. Additionally, ensure the fast-moving goods are nearer for easy access and reduce aisle distance to utilize horizontal space.
- Convenient pick-up locations
If you deal with a wide range of products, have specific sections for each product. Bins can be created depending on the size of the items. Pickers will know where to find what hence saving time during packing and shipping. If goods are small and picked often, have the bins in an accessible location. Avoid mixing different items even if they are similar in size as it will result in confusion.
Have you noticed how your shopping is simplified thanks to the labels in the supermarket? The same principle applies in the warehouse. When the labels are clear, items are easily identified, packed and shipped.
When should labeling be done? Before the products are stored. Thermal printers are the best since they improve the warehouse inventory management system. The attached barcodes are scanned and the information is used to stock flow.
- Install necessary software
In this technological world, there is almost an app for anything. Many developers have invented useful software to enhance the smooth running of your warehouse. You can record goods delivered by your suppliers, track stock movement within the premise and know when they are shipped to customers.
Ordering goods is fast and easy and you’ll receive a notification when they are depleted. Apart from managing purchases, they monitor trends in production. This enables you to see what changes are needed to promote the growth of the business.
- Ensure quality control
Customers will stick to your brand if you have a good record of delivering quality products. If their orders are always late or items have missing parts, they will opt for another company. Others take their complaints to social media and your good name might be tarnished. How can you avert all these?
Before shipping, ensure the items are in a good condition and are accurately packed. Let your customers feel that you care by notifying them when their goods arrive and often request their feedback. They are the main reason why you are in business, remember?
- Cyclic counting
Why wait for the annual company audit or tax filing to rashly count your stock? You know how overwhelming it is. Lighten your load by having frequent stock counts. This improves efficiency in your warehouse because you up to date with the records. Also, it will be easier to identify and rectify the loopholes in your system before you they manifest themselves in losses.
Warehouse inventory systems also have a role to play in speedy deliveries. If the place is in a mess and employees can’t locate items easily, will customers have their goods on time? That will interfere with good customer relations. Workers are also likely to be thorough in their work if they know that stock counting is done regularly.
- Training of employees
The workers, not you, are the people on the ground. They handle all the stock from receiving, labeling, packing and shipping. This is where all sorts of errors happen. Employees may be hasty, ignorant or having a bad day. Training is therefore important to enhance accuracy at work.
Right from the start, communicate your expectations about the job. This will help them work within the company’s protocols. Have a training culture that includes mandatory induction and periodic workshops. This will undoubtedly improve efficiency in your business since each individual will perform his role well.
The bottom line
There aren’t any rigid structures in successful warehouse inventory management. Trends keep on changing as more people discover practical solutions. Why use the same systems year in year out with little results?
Analyze some areas that need improvement. On matters of design, ensure your warehouse layout allows for free movement of staff and goods. Also, have clear and conspicuous labels for easy access. Don’t wait until the last minute to count your stock and for a qualified team, have the workers trained. It might take time and resources to align matters but once things are in order, you’ll have efficient business operations. And your profits will scale up too! Apply these suggestions and watch your business move to the next level.