Warehouse optimization

There are always certain weak points in activities of almost all companies. And very often productiveness of logistic systems of many enterprises suffers from such weak points. Usually such weak points are warehouses, their external as well as internal infrastructures. This article gives some recommendations on educing problems and optimizing of business processes of warehouses.

Typical disadvantages of external infrastructure are connected with the following elements of logistic system and aspects of work which need business process optimization:

  • Roads and passages (including fire access routes), passes, overhead roads, etc.
  • Configuration of ground area and warehouse complex, inconvenient parking zones, etc.
  • Configuration and location of auxiliary warehouse facilities.

Weak points of internal infrastructure which are determined by the following:

  • Inappropriate grating frequency of columns, ceiling height in a warehouse, existing of attics, load upon a warehouse floor, etc.
  • Imperfect warehouse technologies, such as accepting, marking, storage, batching and shipment which need business process optimization
  • Inappropriate specialized mechanisms, equipment, tools used in a warehouse which are the subject of such a form of business process optimization as modernization of equipment.

Business process optimization of a warehouse is provided in three stages

  1. Warehouse and material flow analysis

In order to provide this analysis, you need to define a current stage of material flows and to make a forecast for the future. Primarily, you should analyze the following aspects:

  • Product type;
  • Supply of goods (minimal as well as maximal);
  • Cost of the supply of goods;
  • Pallet capacity;
  • Amount of pallets;
  • Prediction of the growth of a maximal volume of goods;
  • Characteristics of pallets.
  1. Evaluation of cooperation of a warehouse with other departments of a company

Warehouse employees always cooperate with employees of sales, marketing logistics and service departments. Very often information gap in the chain of cooperation of departments of sales, logistics and marketing leads to double counting, a surplus or a deficit of products in a warehouse.

In order to understand whether all departments work consistently, you need to do the following:

  • Ask managers and other employees of departments in order to find out what difficulties they have in their cooperation with related departments (IT, marketing, sales, accounting, financial service and production).
  • Set areas of responsibility of employees for all types of product supplies.
  • Evaluate the impact of each related department on a warehouse working productiveness loss.
  • Define volumes and frequency of influx of incoming, outgoing and returned goods.
  • Define the basic reason of productiveness loss in a warehouse and take measures on its eliminating.
  1. The analysis of work of a warehouse itself

It is very important to evaluate the work of a warehouse according to goods turnover. Analysis of this characteristic will help to understand how fast basic procedures are made in a warehouse.

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