Every aspect of warehouse automation is controlled by your IT system. Warehouse management systems (WMS) can’t function without accurate data input, and they shouldn’t be left to their tasks without the support of analytics. The best systems improve efficiency, speed, and cost. It’s tempting to rush into warehouse automation thinking that if it’s technologically evolved, it must be better than what you’ve been using until now, but your software should be built around your strategy. Your strategy should not be built around your software. WMS platforms are complex. They must be honed to suit your unique inventory and the rest of your business processes.
Topics: Warehouse Automation
How efficient and adaptive is your logistics strategy? To develop a plan, or assess the efficiency of an existing one, every element of your logistics operation should be assessed and monitored to establish costs. KPIs and identify areas where savings can be made. Whether this is something you are doing for the first time, or as part of an ongoing strategy of improvement, you may find the following eight steps useful – each focusing on a different area of your business.
What does ‘smart’ logistics actually mean? While the actual way a business structures its logistics and supply chain varies from company to company, there are three basic principles that underpin an effective, smart logistics strategy. We will look at each in turn in this article: connectivity, data and efficiency.
An efficient transport, warehousing and distribution network delivers a competitive edge and crucial customer satisfaction. It’s the part of the operation that fulfils the sales contract and the needs of customers. Therefore it must be constantly monitored to keep it lean and streamlined.
An inefficient warehouse damages your hard-won customer satisfaction, erodes profits, and risks losing your business market share to competitors who do it better. Streamlining the processes involves taking action to shorten cycles, speed up throughput and make your people more efficient and productive.
Topics: Improve Warehouse Productivity
Logistics is the biggest influencer on your customer satisfaction ratings. If that seems like a blanket statement, then think of it from your customers’ perspective. Happiness is getting the product they ordered quickly or at least on time. Their opinion of your business is rapidly broadcast across social media and review sites. What they say influences potential customers and therefore the growth of your business. The tricky bit is balancing 5-star fulfilment with tightly controlled costs and efficiencies.
The results of a leaner and more resilient supply chain go far deeper than just cost savings. Speed of delivery to the customer is a differentiator, especially in consumer goods and online sales. So how can a supply chain consultant help achieve this desired outcome? What skills are involved?
Topics: Supply Chain Strategy
Successfully growing your business sometimes means you outstrip your warehouse capacity. Optimising storage and rationalising stockholding is the first step to freeing up space. A new warehouse is the only option once all avenues have been exhausted. Ensure you choose wisely.
Available space inevitably gets used up under normal operating conditions. It’s almost a law of nature, just like Parkinson’s Law (work expands to fill the available time). Opportunistic bulk discount purchases, overstocking, old stock or just inefficiency eats up costly space. Suddenly you cannot add new lines that consumers are demanding. Your stock represents too much capital. Business is constrained by your warehouse capacity but expanding to an additional facility may not be feasible at this point. The only option is to increase storage space by better utilisation of what you have available. Where do you start?