From huge advances in automation and logistics technology, warehouse efficiency is easier to improve than ever before. Warehouse management software, artificial intelligence, and more transparent supply chains are all enhancing the productivity, accuracy, and efficiency of any given warehouse, but many operators are still struggling to meet peak efficiency models. The good news is that there are simple ways to help identify workflow bottlenecks and ensure that your team members are working as efficiently as the workspace allows. If you have a less than efficient warehouse, here are the easiest and most effective ways to ensure that your entire operation is working at 100% efficiency at all times.
One of the easiest ways to ensure that your team is working as efficiently as possible is to introduce some form of incentive pay. It’s widely recognized that incentive pay can result in the biggest percent improvement when it comes to labor activity. Ideally, you should offer incentive pay to the pick and pack team, which is usually around 50% of a warehouse workforce.
Strong Supplier Relationships
If your warehouse doesn’t have the inventory that it needs, then you don’t have anything to ship. Maintaining a positive relationship with your suppliers is crucial, and the key is using the right tech. Stock scanning tools and GPS systems ensure that both you and your suppliers know what’s needed and when at all times.
Redesign the Workplace Layout
Too many warehouses have wasted space. That wasted space is wasted potential. Ensure that your stock is stored in the most convenient ways (high demand items closer to the picking station, etc) and that you have the conveyor belt system that most suits your needs. Talk to professional conveyor firms like fluentconveyors.com to find out the many options that may be much more suited to the task based on your workplace and products.
The equipment you use in a warehouse can vary from lift trucks to your conveyor belt and workstations. When they break down, then productivity can come to an immediate halt, and your warehouse won’t be making any money. Always carry out regular maintenance of all of your warehouse equipment, and it will be there when you need it, without the need for costly repairs or replacements.
Every time that there is a required touch of your product, you are slowing movement down. That means a drop in efficiency for every touch. Identify unnecessary motion and find ways to reduce it. Go through each touch step by step to streamline movement at all times.
Go Hands-Free With Tech
From barcode scanning apps on your phone to cutting-edge AR solutions, the more you can take the human element out of any warehouse action will mean an improvement in efficiency. As wearable tech like AR glasses and RFID are becoming more mainstream and affordable, they are starting to become very visible in warehouses.
The more that you can encourage warehouse efficiency, the more profitable your business will be. Measure efficiency at all times and take advantage of the technologies and workplace practices that are industry-recognized to be of high value. Focus on efficiency, and your warehouse will be much more likely to grow.