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Inventory Management: Decluttering Your Warehouse

by Maggie Jones on 2017-08-03 13:24:49

iStock-639347380.jpgMaintaining your inventory and keeping everything organized can seem daunting, especially in a large warehouse with hundreds of employees moving around at any given moment. Knowing which inventory is necessary, which ones have been neglected for too long, and what you can do with them can be hard. We have found that there are many ways to boost the organization of your warehouse inventory, and are guaranteed to free up some space for you to bring on new customers.

 It is a common misconception that warehouse inventory management is simply organizing your warehouse so the inventory can be found in a timely manner. However, good warehouse organization is not only about everything being easy to find; it’s about utilizing the maximum capacity of productivity while saving money and efficiency to increase accuracy across the board.

Start with Upkeep

 First and foremost, be sure to keep up with the operations and warehouse organization consistently. Standards change as your company expands. Pay attention to your crew. Are they able to easily and safely access the inventory? Is there a designated area for damaged items and do you have an effective system in place for dealing with them? If you do not regularly check up on these things, a well-organized warehouse can fall behind and become disorganized making the jobs of your pickers and packers more difficult and more dangerous. Try implementing a checklist for your warehouse manager to go through daily to maintain the upkeep throughout.

 Keep Track of Your High Sellers

 Every  item is important, but knowing which ones produce the highest volume levels is incredibly important. Consider placing your high-volume sellers closest to the shipping deck and keep them easily accessible to save labor time and keep your employees happy. Not only will this keep inventory organized, it will increase efficiency without creating a bunch of extra labor for your pickers and packers. This also keeps your big clients happy, which is definitely an added bonus.

 Consider Re-Organizing the Floor Plan

 As things progress, don’t be afraid to move things around. Changing up the floor plan may seem like a difficult task, but one of the best things you can do if you have unorganized inventory or a change in volume from certain areas is to modify the floor plan to make things more efficient. Always keep things set up in a way that works best for everyone and won’t cost you extra money!

 Explore Money Saver Options

 Cross-docking and wave picking are two very efficient options that allow you to focus on ROI and running a smooth operation. If you do not already practice cross-docking, you should consider the option. Cross-docking allows businesses to manage warehouse inventory seamlessly and makes storage much easier. Wave picking is an option that is incredibly beneficial if your shipping system is more complex, this allows for short-interval-scheduling to keep pickers and packers from getting overwhelmed with too much inventory.

 Personal Identification

 Inventory tracking isn’t the only thing you need to be watching, employee monitoring is just as important. Consider adding new security protocols to make it easier for you to track your employees. As new inventory comes in, security protocols need to change to keep everything running at the same capacity without creating more problems. This also allows you to keep track of non-employee individuals who are out on the floor.

 Use Fixed and Movable Tracking Options

 Utilizing movable tracking options can allow you to see where you placed a product, how you can access it, and if it is ready to be shipped out. This enables you to keep track of where items are located at all times, and keeps the process running smoothly. Fixed tracking options are also an incredibly beneficial option for many businesses. With fixed tracking, you can easily manage and assign destinations with precision. Both tracking methods can be easily combined to create maximum warehouse efficiency.

 Use Quality Warehouse Management Software (WMS)

 iStock-639347244.jpgOnce you have put everything all together and are ready to take your warehouse to the next level, consider a warehouse management software. This allows you to use barcode scanners with barcode labels to ensure that you can locate any product in your warehouse at any time. Lagging can be a huge problem with a lot of inventory management solutions, but the latest tools on the market allow for quality real-time updates which can be tagged with RFID, this can eliminate a lot of confusion when things are moving more efficiently.

 

 Overall, there are many ways to improve your inventory solutions in your warehouse. Keeping everything up-to-date and organized are essential to keeping your operations running smoothly. Contact IDS with any questions, and if you are interested in adding your company to our team.

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