Automate to Avoid Common Warehouse Management Problems
Excessive inventory, unexpected shortages, lack of space, wasted space…the challenges of managing a warehouse are aplenty. There are so many moving parts involved in managing a warehouse, the only way to ensure efficiency, accuracy, and productivity, is through automation. A warehouse management system (WMS) allows you to automate and avoid the more common warehouse management problems. This blog will highlight three common problems and illustrate why automation is the best solution.
Common Warehouse Problems
Redundancy – the act or instance of needless repetition— is an unwelcome visitor in any warehouse. Whether redundancy results in repeatedly confirming quantities of items, or sending a product to a different department that does the exact same thing you just did, or erroneously repeating an order, however it manifests, redundancy adds to labor costs and decreases profits. It slows down production and increases waste.
Amazon changed the game when it comes to customer expectations. Be it consumer or B2B customers, everyone expects that vendors will have their item in stock and ready to ship at all times. Customers expect short shipping times, impeccable order accuracy, and flawless customer service. If your inventory is not accurate, that could lead to shortages, delays in fulfillment, and out-of-stock messages that are going to diminish the satisfaction of your customers and potentially infuriate them. With so many vendor options these days, it is easy for a customer to see an “out-of-stock” or “back-order” message and instead of waiting, simply going to one of your competitors to purchase their item.
Balancing the types of products you have in your warehouse to best suit the needs of your customers at any given time is what is meant by product optimization. This is the ultimate goal of warehouse management. Many purchasing and production managers still struggle to find the right product mix, especially during seasonal changes. Having the wrong products in stock can be just as bad as having no product in stock. Having products that do not move off the shelves is a waste of space and money.
Solution: Automate with a Warehouse Management System
Fortunately, there is a way to eliminate redundancy, satisfy customer expectations, and ensure product optimization: automation. Automation through WMS ensures orders are processed correctly and accurately by automatically accessing inventory data in real time. Automating warehouse operations not only eliminates the likelihood of redundancy errors but can also help with cost reduction, productivity, availability, reliability, and efficiency.
A warehouse management system also helps to ensure you have the right mix of products in your warehouse by tracking not just current trends, but previous year trends as well so you can see what products you will need season by season.
Further, good warehouse management software can streamline the receiving and shipping processes. It can help maintain complex distribution and warehouse management operations providing the ability to plan, execute, and monitor use of resources. WMS provides a number of tools that can help your company avoid many of the common (and not so common) warehouse management problems.