Safety and Security, Efficiency, Cleanliness Efficiency, Cost Control, and Accuracy are the holy grail of warehouse management. However, achieving a perfect synergy between all these factors is easier said than done. Reason! Each of the factors mentioned is complex and has underlying procedures that run deep in itself.
Add to it the fact that every industry maintaining a warehouse has its challenges which are unique. This makes the job of a warehouse manager an ever-changing field. One thing that needs to be mentioned here is that, no matter what amount of technology you put in the management of the warehouse. In this particular scenario, it will always be the slave of the manager handling operations at the ground level. The biggest challenge that warehouse managers face everywhere is maximizing performance in the least possible cost. Today, we would be exploring some of the fundamental issues in warehouse management that cloud warehouse management as a commercial practice.
Redundancy at Process Level
When we take note of traditional ways of handling warehouse operations, we are often exposed to some redundant processes. This happens when the same set of people are handling the same sets of the task. This is quite common in warehouse operations and at times is necessary to provide a streamlined service. However, this habit does take its toll on labor costs and wastage. Such practices are bound to increase redundancy. A solution to this is barcoding of items. Barcoding helps in studying the logistical patterns in a better way. More and more warehouses are now going towards automation. Adapting technology enables a warehouse manager to take a more informed decision and also helps to curb costs.
Layout of Warehouse
This is one factor that most of the recently build warehouses need not be concerned with. The modern warehouses are designed by the professionals and due diligence is taken care of while planning space. However, this was not the scenario in the times foregone. Most of the warehouses in India which are old have serious issues with how space is utilized. As the real-estate was cheaper and warehousing was not taken seriously things were clumsy, to say the least. Now companies like us are into the picture. We provide proper lay-outing solutions to our client thus ensuring that not even a single sq inch of space goes waste.
Most of the warehouses face this issue. There would always be seasonal fluctuations in the workload of the warehouse. It’s natural also. Since the goods stored are seasonal in nature so will be their logistics and everything else related to them. This becomes even more crucial in the case of the manufacturing and retail industries. With them, what happens inside the warehouse is generally controlled by changes in market variables. For a warehouse manager managing such a property, precise knowledge of supply and demand factors is crucial as he may have to rearrange the entire inventory inside the warehouse to match the demand of the distributors. Dealing with seasonal fluctuations will also lead to a warehouse manager managing transportation and other such elements. Predictive software for warehouse management does help to a great extent in such situations.
The Cost of Labor
This is a never-ending fight with warehouse managers everywhere. No matter how much automation we do, we would still require labor. Certain tasks just cannot be done with machines presently. You would require labor to transport materials from trucks to the warehouse, and many other such operations depend upon the labor. Here developing the right mix of expertise using technology will surely help.
Accuracy and Efficiency in keeping a tab on inventory is another challenge that warehouse managers face. Errors in inventory mean having improper stock levels to deal with. This leads to an emergency like situation, which leads to loses. Hence having proper inventory management and audit protocol does help. This is something that no serious business concern maintaining a warehouse can afford to ignore.
If the above-mentioend issues are taken care of proactively then any warehouse can be managed to its optimal efficiencies.