A company’s warehouse operations can determine business growth, as it is responsible for the quality of products, accurate orders, shipping times and customer satisfaction. For this reason, we are providing an informative beginner’s guide to strategically planning a warehouse.
Review the Existing Warehouse
Before you make any form of investment, you need to review your existing warehouse facilities. Make a sketch of both the warehouse building and the floor plan, and ensure all dimensions are to scale for accuracy.
Your next step should be to list every piece of equipment within the warehouse. If you already operate from a warehouse, write a list of all operational processes, staff responsibilities per section and the procedures your business has in place. Often, you will find a problem with an operation within the warehouse. Don’t forget to interview staff to ensure they are adhering to procedures, such as health and safety. It is impossible to make improvements until you have a greater understanding of what you need to improve.
Identify Your Storage and Inventory Requirements
The next step is to review your stock and inventory requirements. You must accurately predict the stock levels your business will need, in addition to where you can safely store the inventory. You need to arrange stock based on the material handling processes and storage needs. Don’t forget to consider high-selling products or the seasonality of items, which should determine how accessible they are for a picker.
Turn a Weakness into a Strength
Do you know how to improve your warehouse operation? It could be to improve employee training, storage space or stock levels. However, it could be time to upgrade your infrastructure and equipment. For instance, you could update a poor, limiting conveyor for a customized conveyor system that complements both your business needs and those of the facility. Visit fluentconveyors.com to find out more. It is vital to look for the most practical and efficient warehouse solutions to turn an operational weakness into a strength.
Evaluate Your New Warehouse Strategy
Once you have determined your warehouse’s strengths and weaknesses, you must carefully evaluate a new strategy. For instance, you must consider the tax implications, total operational cost against new fees, and how quickly you can introduce the changes to grow your business. You must conduct a qualitative analysis to review staff safety, how simple the new warehouse plan will be to manage and the possibility of inventory damage.
Draft Your Strategy
Once you have made a financial and qualitative risk assessment, you can turn your attention to drafting an official warehouse strategy. The strategy should therefore detail improvements to the warehouse space, staff, processes, equipment and plans for potential growth or expansion.
A strategic warehouse plan should never be finished, as it is important to continually look for ways to optimize a facility to ensure a company continues to exceed customer expectation. You must therefore regularly edit or update the plan to routinely improve warehouse efficiency, which will ensure your operations align with your business goals.