In a warehouse, loading and unloading activities will invariably take place on a day-to-day basis. Your workers will receive goods and materials and unload them. Thereafter, they will take these goods to the appropriate section of the facility and store them. Similarly, when carrier trucks arrive at your warehouse to take some goods or products away, your workers will retrieve the goods first. Thereafter, they will load the products on the trucks and organise the vacant spaces in the shelving units accordingly.
The average individual might not be able to find too many differences in the loading or unloading of goods in a warehouse. But, experienced providers of storage solutions will know that unloading goods at a warehouse can be much simpler than loading goods on to a truck. This will be the case because after your workers have unloaded a truck, they will be able to store the items accordingly. The transporter will not need to wait for the workers to store the goods in the warehouse. But, when your workers load goods on to a truck, the transporter will need to wait until the completion of the loading. Naturally, this will consume time. And, if your workers have not picked or retrieved the inventory accurately, the cost implications could increase even further.
Warehouse owners need to formulate their picking strategies effectively. Only then will they be able to improve the efficiency and accuracy levels of their workers. Different warehouses and inventories will necessitate the use of different picking strategies. No one strategy will be able to suit all situations perfectly. Therefore, if you want to fine-tune your picking strategy to boost your operational efficiency, consider:
- Utilising Effective Inventory Tracking Systems: To pick items from shelves accurately, your workers will need to remember where they stores these items. This necessitates the use of various inventory tracking systems such as RFID or barcode scanners. These scanners can help your workers ascertain the location of the inventory needed. But, these workers will also need to retrieve these items efficiently. This could involve organising the warehouse in a manner where the workers store all high-demand goods near the shipping area for faster retrieval.
- Fine-Tuning Your Picking Strategies: Laser cutting service companies can design your shelving units to perfection. But, they will not be able to tell you the picking strategy that will suit you perfectly. Successful warehouse owners usually follow three picking strategies comprising
- Zone Picking: Each worker functions in a specific zone. This strategy involves assigning workers to a specific area. Thus, each worker will operate in a specific zone. This helps in minimising confusion.
- Batch Picking: This involves assigning multiple orders to each worker at one time. The worker will visit each zone and pick inventory for all the assigned orders in one trip. This minimises repeated trips to a zone, which also reduces traffic levels.
- Wave Picking: In this method, workers move from one zone to another, picking items they need. At the end, each worker sorts the items picked to the individual order.
- Keeping Your Inventory Handling Steps Down to a Minimum: To enhance the productivity levels of your workers, you might want to focus on reducing the number of steps involved in the item handling process. Many warehouses follow lengthy item handling processes. These drag down the efficiency levels of the workers. By reducing the number of times your workers ‘pick’ or ‘touch’ an item, you could end up boosting their productivity levels. For instance, avoid situations where multiple workers handle an item before shipping it. Instead, ensure that only one worker picks the item and handles it throughout the shipping process.
For more information, contact us at Premier Engineering today.