Optimising Warehouse Efficiency
Many UK-based businesses require a warehouse or storage facility of some kind, and there are many measures that can be put in place to optimise warehouse efficiency. Ensuring that your warehouse has a good set-up will help enhance productivity, as well as reduce errors or incorrect orders being sent out. Investing in high-quality warehouse equipment is one way to set up a well-run facility. Similarly, optimising the packing and picking process will speed up the management of orders and movement of goods. Warehouse packing for more organisation is an easy and effective process to improve and optimisation of this process can bring big benefits for your company.
In response to the COVID crisis, many businesses moved their trade online and began to rely more heavily on commerce than their brick and mortar stores. As a result, online purchases have increased a lot in the UK and many businesses are now expanding their warehouse capacity to accommodate extra products and goods sold through their online store. Apart from expanding capacity, some of the most useful and best warehouse equipment to invest in includes the following:
- Pallet trucks, stacker trucks and hoists make it easy and safe to lift heavy goods and move them around the warehouse
- Transport rollers and conveyor tables ensure products can be moved across the warehouse floor with ease
- Climbing equipment such as ladders and order pickers let you maximise space in the warehouse and ensure that goods are easily accessible when stored at any height
- Scissor lift tables, cranes and pallets are excellent tools for lifting and stacking goods of all sizes and weights
- Barriers and clear signage can be used to direct employees around the warehouse and ensure safety in all areas
- For safety, and depending on the type of goods in your warehouse, items such as collision guards, impact protection railings and impact protection bollards may be required
- Also in terms of safety, some warehouses may require specialist products such as materials for handling hazardous waste, along with cleaning and sweeping equipment.
Shelving is also a key component in any warehouse and investing in height-adjustable shelf racks and pallet racks will allow you to customise the storage space as required. As business needs may change over time, having shelving that can be moved and changed easily will let you adapt as needed.
Automation and AI
The next big thing in warehouse management is warehouse automation. Automating processes where possible can improve efficiency, reduce the error rate and ensure that employees do not need to perform tedious tasks repeatedly. Many UK-based warehouses are now looking towards automation and implementing the use of robots to support with warehouse logistics and tasks. Bots can perform order picking, for instance, as well as sorting and labelling. They help warehouses respond quickly to increased demand for products and can make many processes easier and quicker. As an extra benefit, AI and robots also have a much lower error rate than humans.
No matter how big or small your warehouse is, examining and optimising your workflows is a great way to improve the overall performance of your business. Reviewing your work processes once or twice a year is recommended. Likewise, investing in high-quality warehouse equipment that fits the needs of your products will support smooth workflows for warehouse employees and allow them to get orders sent out as quickly as possible. When it comes to online shopping, customers want to receive their orders quickly and it reflects well on a business when purchases are sent out as soon as possible. Setting up a smooth-running, well-equipped warehouse is the first step in achieving this goal.