The warehouse is the central hub of your business. It is where your inventory is held and where you wrap things off and send them to your customers. The warehouse is also a place with countless shelves, racks and plenty of boxes. When you are running a large business, it is crucial that you organise your warehouse efficiently in order to find your stock when needed. Here are some tips to help you out.
Work out which items are your best sellers by consulting your database. Make sure that these items are always easy to access when you need them. Think about the space you have in the warehouse and consider adding all of these items close to the packing area, and also close to the ground for easy access- this will mean when someone orders the product you can retrieve it quickly.
Map It Out
If you’ve ever been to IKEA, you’ll know that at the end of the store just before you hit the tills, they have a warehouse where you can pick up your parts for the furniture you want to buy. They label each aisle in the warehouse, and they also add a number to each item. This goes from left to right and maps out where everything is in the warehouse. If you want to run a successful business you need to do the same. Map out where every single item is in your warehouse and label it. Use scissor lift hire to label the highest points of the steel, and create a system for the mapping out of the space. For example, starting from the highest row, you can name that A, then B, C, D, etc… until you reach the floor. Now left to right, number the space with each item present. This means that when you are looking for a product you’ll have 3 parameters; the aisle, the row, and the location.
When someone buys an item, how do you mark it as sold? Every time an item leaves the warehouse you will need to adjust your inventory so that you know exactly how much stock you have in the building. Consider using a program like Cin7 which will read the barcode of the item as you send it off for shipping, and will adjust the inventory automatically.
You should have a dedicated corner of the warehouse with a large sliding door for deliveries. It should be a large area as you will need to bring items in and sort through them, then check the delivery note to make sure that the quantity you’ve received matches up. You’ll then be able to find a space in the warehouse for the stock. To do this you’ll need to calculate the approximate space each palette will take up, and find a place in the warehouse with enough spare space for it all.
Upkeep and Cleaning System
Warehouses can get pretty dirty very quickly, and this is why you will always see people sweeping up when you visit a store like Costco. With the constant moving and placing of large pallets of product, you will end up spreading a lot of dust and rubbish. Make sure that at the end of each day you dispose of any excess cardboard into a shredder and recycling any other waste you can. The rest can go into a skip. Take the time at the end of each month to restock the shelves and perform essential quality control checks- to make sure all items stored in the warehouse are in full working order. There should be a parking bay for all forklift trucks and pump trucks, and you should make sure all aisles are clear at the end of the day.