How to Prepare Warehouse for the Peaks?

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15 Jun, 2021

How to Prepare Warehouse for the Peaks?

As much as the holiday season brings in sales and opportunities, it also brings along stress and challenges with it. If an organisation is able to tackle the difficult situation, then it can bring in significant portion of their annual sales during this time. However, if the company fails to take strategic steps, it will witness loss of, both, the sales as well as the customers. Therefore, it is highly important for the warehouse operators to stay on their toes with advanced planning and improve certain warehouse practices to maintain a smooth process during the peak season.

While some warehouses across North America excel at dealing the holiday seasons like professionals, there are still some that are lacking basic strategies that a company needs to stay ready with. Some of the strategies may include investing in material handling and storage equipment, improving warehouse layout, optimizing inventory management practices, etc. In this blog, we shall talk about how one can prepare their warehouse for the holiday season and get the best out of the time.

Embrace Maintenance

It gets much worse, during peak season, when there comes an unexpected downtime on an essential equipment. Since, you and your people are busy with coping up with higher demands, a proper maintenance must be ensured before time of the holiday season starts. Make sure you –

  • Complete maintenance check for most of your critical systems and equipment
  • Stock up spare parts of the equipment or tools if, in case, you will be needing one.
  • Ensure that your maintenance agreements are up to date and does not need renewal.

Improve Storage Capacity

Now that you have checked everything, you must ensure that there is enough storage for the goods to come in and be stored at the warehouse. While making space, you must consider to keep the storage for the entire process which includes receiving, stocking, picking, packing and shipping products. Some tips to ensure your warehouse space is fully utilized are –

  • Stacking the products/good vertically up to near-ceiling height can change your storage game drastically.
  • If the products are not packaged, it is the best time to keep them in containers and free up the extra space they are taking.
  • Rather than keeping products in multiple near-empty palettes, make sure you consolidate all of them in one container.
  • Always have an extra floor of storage, racks or shelve, if possible.
  • Reduce the aisle width down to the narrowest width possible. This can save up a lot of room for the extra shelves or racks to be upgraded.

Hire Enough Permanent Staff

It is better to not rely on temporary or seasonal staff and invest on hiring some trained personnel for the warehouse operations before the season is in full force. Waiting even a few weeks will significantly reduce your available labour pool, raising hiring costs and making it even more difficult to fill open positions. Also, keep in mind all the time that will go wasted to train the newly hired lot. You should ideally have everyone up to speed on your processes before the seasonal crunch begins.

Know Your Equipment

During the peak season, with the demand increasing and the goods rushing in the warehouse, sometimes warehouse operators tend to forget which equipment will be ideal for which purpose. Therefore, to make sure the handling of the goods is in working order, it’s worthwhile to look into what all equipment you have and might need. As you get ready for the influx of the inventory, take a look at the categories which might help you in support the workload –

  • Workstation equipment – Lift tables and loaders are examples of workstation equipment that improve productivity and minimise repetitive motion injuries by providing superior ergonomic solutions.
  • Pallet Management Equipment – Pallet inverters and exchangers enable tilting, rotating, and moving laden pallets. These devices can invert and swap pallets fast and efficiently, saving you time from manually removing items from one pallet to another.
  • Loading and storage equipment – Stackable plastic pallets, pallet dispensers, and stretch wrappers can help you improve your loading and shipping efficiency.

Remember to Collect Data

Once the season is over, you must take into the present year’s performance into consideration if you want to make serious changes in your warehouse operations next year as well. Make your warehouse automated as much as possible and have a system that collects the data which will be valuable for the next year’s process and the changes you will be needed to make.

Planning is very important if you want to optimize your warehouse operations, and you might need to do it now. Refine the service, systems and processes to be able to look back at what mistake you did and how you can change them for the next year. This way, the data collected will help you in optimizing your productivity, performance and customer service even more.

To be able to prepare your warehouse even before the peak seasons start is all about optimizing your warehouse operations. That is where LSI World can your most trusted ally. To ensure openness and completeness in service delivery, our supply chain comprises smart integration of end-consumer information, transportation, and warehouse. Across all categories, our clients have received 98 percent service delivery, which is far higher than the industry norm.

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