A well-run warehouse is the most important part of a successful company. Everything comes and goes out of the warehouse. Sales, distribution, and most transactions depend on it, so it has to be well run. Employees have to be efficient, conscientious and all inventory has to be accounted for. Procedures have to be in place, so employees know what to do and can be held accountable. You have to have checkpoints, lists and rules so inventory doesn’t get lost and customers know they can trust you. Here are the most common warehouse mistakes and how to fix them as soon as possible.
Inaccurate details and quantities
Information on receipts and purchase orders must be checked and verified as correct. Quantities, shipping addresses, prices, item codes, units of measure—they all have to be correct. Even if the error originated in another department, it has to be fixed by the warehouse personnel before it’s stored or shipped out. What the customer receives and what’s kept on the shelf has to match the paper or electronic records. Management must oversee that all procedures are followed.
Miscommunications between employees
Employees and interacting departments must establish an open flow of communication to ensure fewer mistakes are made. If an order changes, the warehouse must be made aware immediately so they can stay on top of it. And there are so many means of communication—texting, emailing, phoning, faxing or simply talking — there’s no excuse not to send a message.
Lack of cooperation between departments
In addition to decent communication, the departments also have to cooperate. They have to respect each other’s procedures and responsibilities and do their parts as well. To make sure inventory is properly tracked and managed, it might be a good idea to only allow certain departments or teams to access the warehouse. You could even secure it with a lock or security code.
It’s important to devote an adequate amount of time to both shipping and receiving. If orders aren’t carefully and accurately shipped, the company won’t be able to get paid. And if inventory isn’t properly received and stored, the warehouse won’t even know what it has in stock. Thus, shipping orders might be delayed, inventory might be damaged or misplaced.
Proper storage and organization
Each inventory item has to have its own storage location in the warehouse. It has to be able to be tracked and located for when it’s ready to be shipped. Everyone must make sure everything stays in its proper place. It takes a diligent warehouse staff to do meticulous walk-throughs, checking and counting inventory to make sure items stored match records. When warehouse procedures are followed, the staff can prevent problems, boost profits, reduce costs and keep customers happy.
For more tips on how to manage your warehouse, connect with one of our recruiting specialists today!