Managing warehouse operations is a lot more difficult than most people realize, it goes beyond managing receiving, storing, and shipping materials. An effective warehouse manager might make the job seem easy, but a lot goes into maintaining a smooth operation. Experience is usually the best teacher, but warehouse managers should know some basic items to have successful warehouse operations.
We at AML have an extensive understanding of the need to help a modern warehouse operate effectively and smoothly. To better help our customers, we’ve assembled some warehouse management tips that every modern warehouse manager should know:
1. Safety Comes First in the Warehouse
An unsafe work environment could end up damaging something irreplaceable: a human being. It isn’t worth it to cut corners and risk the health of employees for the sake of warehouse operations. A warehouse manager should constantly be on the lookout for dangerous situations, like uneven flooring or out of date equipment in the warehouse. It is not unheard of for employees to use makeshift platforms to reach something from a high shelf. Make sure your employees know that taking a minute to locate a ladder is always the best option.
It would be smart for every manager to have someone inspect his/her warehouse on a regular basis. That way, issues can be fixed before they turn into safety concerns and an accident occurs that not only harms your employees, but halts warehouse operations.
2. Cleanliness Can Pay Dividends for Warehouse Operations
If a warehouse has a cleaning schedule, all employees will be involved in maintaining the building. Some employees might be more willing cleaners than others, so a schedule will keep everything fair. Not only will the warehouse look better, but things will be so much easier to find. Things can become lost when clutter accumulates; buying more of something only to find out later that it was in another part of the warehouse should never happen and looking for items in a warehouse can harm the efficiency of warehouse operations.
3. The Importance of Increased Productivity & Visibility in the Warehouse
The productivity of a warehouse hinges on the way the inventory is set up. Even if everything is organized, a bad setup can hurt the efficiency of the entire warehouse operation. A warehouse manager should know to keep the most common/divopular products as close to the shipping area as possible. If a popular item is located far from shipping, or high on a shelf, too much time will be spent retrieving it.
Mobile handheld computers are vital to improve productivity and visibility. Employees aren’t tied to a desk and can view critical data while on the warehouse floor or in the yard – in real time. Barcode scanners can significantly reduce user errors by decreasing keystrokes and eliminating mounds of paperwork. The devices can also work in conjunction with your warehouse management system to gain a better outlook of your operations and guide you to make improvements to the inventory management system and warehouse operations if needed.
4. Regular Checkups Save Time for Warehouse Managers
Broken equipment can really slow a warehouse down. Finding out something is broken right when you need it is never a good feeling for a warehouse manager. Performing regular checkups on important tools and managing equipment might take a few extra minutes here and there, but those checkups can save a lot of time later. These checkups will allow you to know when something is going to need to be replaced, or when you will need to order more of something. Staying on top of those things can really increase productivity and eliminate downtime, bettering warehouse operations.
5. Communication is Vital, Especially for a Warehouse Manager
Warehouse managers have a lot to worry about, but employees should always come first. A manager who regularly interacts with employees will have a better command over his/her workplace. It’s the job of the manager to ensure that everyone is on the same page. If workers don’t know what is expected of them, there will be an inevitable breakdown in productivity, and everyone will have to work extra hard to regain lost ground, which shows poor management and leadership.
Every warehouse manager will have different perspectives on how to run a workplace, but they will all agree that efficiency is extremely important. There are plenty of ways to build a productive warehouse, but these five promote a safe, clean, and connected environment.These five tips improve warehouse operations and are essential warehouse management tips for both the newer manager and the seasoned professional. There are tools that every warehouse should have to create a more efficient, productive, and safer warehouse operation. You could consider it the sixth tip: Software – AML
Warehouse managers should be familiar with the top software in the warehousing industry, even if the warehouse isn’t particularly modern, the software helps create a more efficient operation. To exclusively rely on your employee’s knowledge of the various software used is a recipe for problems, as you’re the manager and you must know the ins and outs of your warehouse. We at AML offer software applications to accommodate a range of warehousing needs and inventory management, but also provide guidance in setting it up and learning the system.
We at AML invest in our customers and the warehousing industry, not only by providing top-tier products but by being an ongoing resource to our customers.