The key to success for many businesses is the warehouse, the engine room behind how shops are filled and how orders are procured. The warehouse of a shop, a manufacturer or a distributor is where the battle for speed of service is won and lost and if you want to take your company to the next level, working hard on streamlining your warehouse is the best way to do it. From the pallet racking to the picking practices used, speeding up your warehouse should include all aspects of it.

Modern technology has drastically overhauled warehouse best practices and there are so many options for business owners, to automate and use technology to greatly increase the productivity and the overall speed of the warehouse. Let’s look at some of the things you can be doing, with and without technology, to increase the output of your warehouse.

Pallet Racking

The first place that any business should start when looking into ways of speeding its warehouse, is how the products are stored before being picked. The pallet racking therefore is crucial to the productivity of your warehouse practices and this is where you ought to start. First you must ensure that your racking is fit for purpose, and large enough to store what you need, secondly you should look into the organisation of you racking, to make the picking process simpler.

Use of PDAs in Line with Software

The software which we have at our fingertips right now is absolutely incredible and it can help you greatly when it comes to speeding up your warehouse processes. New picking software not only helps you to speed up operations in the warehouse, but this software also works in relation to software which you have around stock levels, helping you to better manage the warehouse on the whole. Giving your staff PDAs on the warehouse floor allows them to swiftly find and pick stock, as well as giving them the tools to better manage the organisation of the stock.

Vehicle Investment

A small investment in some new and cutting edge vehicles such as fork lift trucks and pallet trucks, can instantly speed up the warehouse. The money which you do invest in these additional vehicles, or even replacement vehicles, will be saved in the future through increased productivity and speed. It is important that you also ensure that many of you staff are trained on these vehicles, to ensure that there is someone always available to operate them.

Incentivise

In terms of increasing the performance of your staff in the warehouse, offering incentivised pay is a very smart idea. Attach additional bonuses on to the salary of those working in the warehouse, for metrics such as picking speed and quality. Offering your staff bonuses based on work quality will drive them on to perform to even higher levels, and this increased productivity will actually make you more money than you will pay out for a bonus.

The key to speeding up your warehouse is smart organisation, giving your team the best tools to do the job, and giving them some incentive for high performance.