It's not easy to run a warehouse of any size, and running at full efficiency is even more challenging. The longer you've been operating the warehouse, the harder it often is to make even small changes to business processes, let alone the bigger changes that can be so transformative. However, if you want to operate your warehouse at maximum efficiency, changes do have to be made. The good news is that implementing even some of the smallest of changes can impact productivity and profitability more than you might think. Here are some of our top tips for running the most efficient warehouse possible in 2021.
Layout and Inventory Management
It's hard to even consider redesigning your warehouse layout because it's such a big task. However, it can also be the key to peak efficiency. Start by checking the way that you store your inventory, making sure that you have:
- Limited space between stock items
- Easy access to inventory
- High demand products being stored more closer to the packing station
- Items frequently purchased at the same time stored close together
- Heavy products stored on lower shelves
It's a good idea to use customized racking that suits your workspace and your inventory, but even the above changes can be incredibly high-impact in terms of productivity. It's also a smart idea to adopt a lean inventory model, where you only have those items in stock that are being ordered. The lean inventory style is more challenging to adopt, but it can make businesses far more agile.
Top Tip: When it comes to warehouse layout, always make sure that you have the most suitable type of conveyor belt in place. There are so many types of conveyor belts available, and changing the type that you use can dramatically speed up workflow. Look at the range of options available from sites like fluentconveyors.com and make sure that the belt system that you use is the best type for the job.
Investing In Staff
Your team members are often the best source of information when it comes to workplace efficiency. This is true in all businesses, but especially so in warehouses. Admin staff and management teams can often be too distant from the work floor to appreciate that small changes can dramatically boost efficiency. Investing in your team members through enhanced training can also yield hugely positive results. As those team members learn new work-relevant skills, they bring those skills back into the workspace. That means your business gets to benefit. That investment will also make team members more loyal to you, one factor alone that can boost productivity and efficiency. Even consider smaller investments like:
- Installing ergonomic workstations and benches that can reduce injuries, meaning fewer days off for recovery
- Height adjusting workstations at points where multiple people may work over different shifts
- Lifting equipment
Investing in your team and their safety is the smart way to run a warehouse.
These large and small changes will all help improve the manageability of your warehouse. Take the time to listen to your team members and always ensure that as little space in your warehouse is wasted. The more that you streamline workflows and boost employee confidence, the more that your warehouse will be able to reach peak efficiency.