Operational efficiency underpins just about every other relevant business metric these days. Without it your organisation can falter and may even end up in financial dire straits. So, it makes sense to invest time and effort when it comes to improving warehouse efficiency to ensure that your operations are functioning optimally – there are some very simple ways to do this, no matter what your current situation.
1. Streamline your inventory
If you’re currently working with a huge and unwieldy inventory you’re much more likely to be operating on an inefficient basis. The best operations are lean, built around carefully and selectively chosen inventory that doesn’t contain much safety stock and which relies on smaller quantities. Your warehouse will function far better with lean inventory, which makes this a great place to start.
2. Use your floor space wisely
Optimising the space that you have will enable you to get more from it. That may mean some reorganisation when it comes to storage units, shelving, racks etc. Make sure you’re using the vertical space available, as well as the horizontal, look at more efficient pick and pack options that make better use of space and ensure that you’re not losing essential space to waste and clutter.
3. Give your employees a productive space in which to work
No matter how efficient your employees are, if their workstations are disorganised or cluttered it will be difficult to improve productivity and reduce inefficiency. So, if better performance is your goal, start with individual workstations and look at how each one could be organised so that they function to support greater efficiency. That may mean removing items to clear a larger space for tasks or ensuring that workers have all the tools and equipment that they need to hand to complete jobs more quickly. It’s often useful to start by asking your team for feedback on where they think improvements might be made.
4. Invest in technology
There is a wide range of technology available to support more efficient warehouse operations today. For any business serious about greater productivity and performance, investing in equipment such as automated storage and retrieval systems, can deliver tangible benefits when it comes to efficiency. Not only can tasks be completed more quickly but this type of technology is also designed to optimise floor space and will help to improve accuracy and reduce mistakes. Warehouse management software is another tech-driven efficiency solution, one that will provide greater perspective and opportunities to improve existing processes and systems.
5. Optimise workforce efficiency
Does your current warehouse set up optimise the workforce you have available or slow workers down? For example, are frequently sold and high volume items easily available and located at the front of the warehouse? Do you store items that often sell together close to each other? A warehouse picking plan will help to optimise workforce efficiency by ensuring the space available is organised in the most productive way.
Greater warehouse efficiency can make a huge difference to operations and profit – automated picking and storage solutions have a big role to play in that. Contact us to find out more.