As most successful warehouse owners will tell you; it’s not what you sell, it’s how you sell it! You could have the best, most desirable product on earth, but if you haven’t got the staff and the processes under which they work correct, chances are you’ll fail miserably every time. Still, with the right advice, the right vision, and a whole heap of cash, there really is no reason why you shouldn’t be able to make a resounding success of your warehouse distribution business.
Before I became a fulltime writer, I actually spent around 10 years working in warehouses around the UK, and I saw quite a lot. It became obvious to me when traveling round that some bosses just didn’t have a clue how to provide for their workforce. So, with that in mind, I’ve written this article to help educate some of you before you start heading down the wrong path. Nobody wants you to fail, but that’s just what you’ll do if you don’t pay attention.
1 – Effective Order Software
Okay, so, the first thing you need to do is accept that you’re going to have to spend a lot of money to get the best linked order and inventory software. You must do this because inferior products produce far less desirable results. Your orders need to be organised by priority, by stock, and by the location of that stock – and sadly this is a task that would take a whole team of people without the best software available. So, do some research and put your hand in your wallet.
2 – Conveyor Systems
Unless you own (or intend to buy) a very small warehouse, installing systems like those available from Conveyor Systems Ltd is essential. This will allow your workers to spend time performing their duties rather than walking around your premises, having to move things from one side to the other. Make life easy for them, and they’ll make life easier for you – simples.
3 – Automate Wherever Possible
Nobody wants to put people out of a job, but the truth is that failing to automate processes that can be done more effectively by machines than humans will drastically reduce the level of your performance compared to your competitors. I can almost guarantee they won’t be so hesitant in sacking Dave and replacing him with R2D2.
4 – Incentive Programs For Workers (especially order pickers)
Let’s face it, unless you’ve managed to fully automate the picking process (something rarely achieved – yet!) your productivity will depend heavily on your workers ability and desire to work in a speedy fashion. So, to encourage this wherever possible will always be a wise move. Try offering incentives like bottles of wine, theme park tickets, or even monthly or quarterly bonuses for the quickest and most accurate workers.
5 – Study Your Competitors
It’s probably true that your competitors would tell you to “sod off” if they knew you were going head to head with them, but I’m sure you can think of a creative excuse to ask for a tour of their warehouse. This can be a great way of finding out how they operate and if you’ve been missing anything. Pretend to be a potential customer, client, or whatever – just get inside there and have a good look around.
So there you have it my soon-to-be warehouse tycoons, if following that information doesn’t help you to build a productive business, I really don’t know what will.