Picking is perhaps one of the most important tasks that a warehouse has to perform, as a lot of functions have to take a backseat if picking is not done properly.
If you’ve looked after warehouse operations for a certain period of time, you surely must have mastered picking strategies. But the real question here is, how do you differentiate between strategies that will work for you vs ones that work for your entire team?
You have to understand that with picking strategies, there’s not a single solution that will apply to all aspects and processes that go on within the facility. Different warehouses will have different customer bases and inventories that will require approaches and solutions that are tailored specifically to cater to those needs.
While this may sound like a lot of work, there are several other aspects that you need to focus on around a warehouse facility to lessen your burden. By focusing on simplifying the picking strategy, you can get a lot more done irrespective of the kind of products you deal with.
Keeping this in mind, you can then go ahead and design an ideal solution for a smooth picking process that suits your specific warehouses needs.
Enhancing Storage and Location Woes
With respect to picking, one of the biggest problems that a warehouse facility faces is the location and placement of items. In other words, keeping track of where everything is kept.
You already might have a solution to keep tabs on the available inventory like RFID scanners, barcodes or digitalised inventory counts, but in case of larger warehouses, this is just scratching the surface.
Even if you are aware of the whereabouts of every item’s location, reaching where these are stored in heavy duty tote boxes, stacked on various racks is another challenge altogether.
You can focus on the items that are sold more quickly and by taking that into account, undertake mild rearranging and reorganise your warehouse storage.
You can reap both short and long term benefits as it will greatly impact the layout of your inventory going forward.
Our suggestion is ensuring that all storage solutions are labelled appropriately so that your warehouse can run far more efficiently moving forward.
Reconsider Your Picking Methods and Modify Them
A crucial aspect of getting work done in real time is being aware of when and where you pick your items. But, when you take a close look at it all, how you pick these items is of equal importance. There are 3 types of picking that is common in modern warehouse management:
- Bath Picking – With this type of picking, a dedicated worker is assigned to look after multiple orders that they have to pick all at once. This helps manage the foot traffic in the facility a bit better, not to mention it also helps reduce the risk of falling pallets.
- Zone Picking – In this type of picking, each worker is allocated a different zone/area of the facility and they are responsible for looking after picking orders that take place within that assigned zone.
- Wave Picking – This is a combination of both bath and zone picking as it goes from one zone to the other, picking items all at once and organising them according to the orders received later on.
It might look as if there’s a lot to do, but once you find the picking method that best suits your warehouses requirements, there will be more warehouse reliability in terms of dealing with orders.
Decrease The Number Of Steps Involved In The Handling Of Items
In general, no matter what approach you choose for the handling of items, decreasing the number of times an item is dealt with will work wonders in enhancing the productivity of your facility.
Several redundancies are involved in item handling in most warehouses. These can be reduced when your workers are well trained and are capable of handling multiple tasks at hand which will contribute towards reducing the instances of errors.
Ensure that workers pick an item and see it off from start to finish until it’s received by the customer and keep tabs on deliveries along the way until they reach their destination.
Keeping these tips in mind will help you choose a picking strategy that’s ideal for your warehouse. For more information on how to securely store stock and machinery, get in touch with our team at Plastic Box Warehouse today.