In 2016 you have a wide range of resources to help you maximize the efficiency of your warehouse operations. Things that were just pipe dreams a decade ago are business-as-usual today. The availability of automated scheduling and inventory systems have revolutionized the way warehouses operate.
Here we outline some of the best strategies to help you streamline your supply chain.
- Figure out your core tasks, and focus on them. Set crystal-clear goals, then develop a business strategy to get you there. Running a warehouse may not be one of the core functions to invest your money and personnel into. Outsourcing warehouse operations might make more sense than trying to handle it in-house, freeing up capital that could be better used elsewhere.
- Make lasting connections. When you build relationships—whether they are with third party logistics providers, clients, customers, or suppliers—think in the long-term. It can take time to develop these relationships, so be patient and cultivate a cohesive team that brings mutual ongoing benefit for both parties. Make sure you’re helping to foster that kind of dynamic by handling your working relationships with the same care you would personal ones.
- Let results be your driving force. Pay for performance, not just presence. Give your personnel incentive to perform. Create an environment that celebrates outcomes. Set short-term goals that serve to further your overall business strategy, and reward the appropriate people or departments when they are reached. Take the time to develop a compensation program that recognizes and rewards innovators and over-achievers. Any time, money, and effort put toward this end will likely be returned several-fold.
- Give your supply chain managed labor partner room to help you succeed. Be willing to take advice. An effective relationship with an outsourced managed labor partner is a true collaboration, where your ideas, suggestions, and goals are key. Don’t be afraid to sign on for long-term strategies. Skipping around from one game plan to another can lead to a perpetually delayed return on investment. Be open to advice and suggestions from your managed labor provider. When you are willing to let them, a competent warehouse management firm can show you the path to fantastic results.
- Track everything diligently. Make sure you have systems in place to track productivity and other areas of potential inefficiency. Run regular assessments to see where adjustments can be made. Doing this often can give you the ability to catch issues before they become major problems.
Achieving ultimate efficiency in warehousing requires a multi-faceted approach. The right provider can help you develop one that is perfectly molded to suit your needs and help you realize your goals faster.