A warehouse is not just a place to store goods and release them as and when required, but it is also an integral part of many businesses. Running a warehouse perfectly may not be everyone’s cup of tea, as it requires a lot of organisation, patience and delegation.
You could ask any warehouse manager how easy the task of running a warehouse is and we can pretty much guarantee that all of them would tell you it’s anything but a walk in the park.
The person responsible for running the warehouse needs to keep numerous plates spinning, which include the supervising of goods and products, ensuring the quality and quantity of products remains consistent, maximising and utilising available space, increasing labour efficiency, minimising operating costs, motivating employees, ensuring safety guidelines are met and participating in client relations, to name just a few!
Here are few things that one should keep in mind for efficient warehouse operations:
Maintain proper working conditions
Healthy working conditions lie at the core of any successful employer-employee relationship. Good working conditions can help keep the employees happy and make them willing to work harder than they usually do.
Make sure all the working areas are properly lit
Working in proper light is not just good for your employees, but also for the merchandise. It helps workers assess the quality of stock, but also means that they will be able to find items quickly. Good lighting is also essential if you’re warehouse is to run during evening hours.
Train your employees
All the employees hired by the company might not be from the same field or might be unaware of stock handling best practice, so before assigning them responsibilities, train (or ask knowledgeable staff member to train) them in their respective work to get effective, safe work done.
Ensure the warehouse equipment is safe and maintained
Prevention is always better than cure. It’s always better to check all the equipment and machines of the warehouse regularly to reduce the chances of any mishaps occurring. Plus, this way, any maintenance requirements can be met before it’s too late.
Ignoring safety and fire safety norms can end up being the biggest mistake in your career and it could end up costing more than just a little stock – failing to follow safety measures could end up with people losing their life, so safety in the warehouse should be your biggest priority.
Any single mistake can harm your organisation’s overall production too, so it is always advisable to enforce the safety rules strictly.
The Importance of Maintaining Good Relations with Staff
The key to creating an environment that is the most conducive for growth is to have a healthy and functional relationship with all those that form the overall workforce.
Communicate with your staff
Regular communication with your employees will keep you updated about everything you need to know and will be a chance for you to query any issues that they may have.
Being a manager that listens to his/her workforce will mean that you garner respect from members of staff at all levels. It will build a healthy relationship between you and your staff and will also increase the productivity of the warehouse.
Hire qualified staff
Employing an under qualified candidate is never a good idea. Initially, it may seem feasible as it can often save money short term, but the poor quality of work reduces the overall productivity of the organisation, which is not ultimately not affordable at all.
Motivate and review work performance from time to time
Motivation boosts the capacity to work. It is a good idea to motivate your staff from time to time to maintain the quality of work and also to review their performance so that they can improve it if it is not meeting the organisation’s standards. This is also a good way to increase motivation because you can discuss with them possible promotions and give out extra responsibilities to those who have proven themselves capable.
Fire the tainted employees
An employee with a negative mind-set will do nothing but cause problems within the workplace. If an employee is not following the rules and regulations, is not working close to their capacity, is continuously late or not behaving appropriately at the workplace, then they will need to be removed from the organisation, regardless of whether you get on well with them or not.
Follow rules and regulations
Rules and regulations in any organisation set out working guidelines. Needless to say, all staff members should follow these rules and regulations. The company policies should also comply with the law of the land.
Assets and equipment of warehouse
Get hard on theft
Theft is a serious threat to any organisation. A warehouse is full of merchandise, as well as expensive electrical devices like laptops, mobile phones and other electronic items. Theft can cause severe financial stress to the affected organisation, so it should be a priority to safeguard all assets and equipment.
In good condition
Make sure all the devices and machines are in good condition and are working exactly as they should so that they do not interrupt the production and functioning of your warehouse.
Ensure equipment is meeting industry standards
Sometimes it may happen that the working capacity of a machine may not be working exactly how it should do. It is also possible that machines may suddenly start taking far longer to start up and shut down.
Such a situation usually arises due to improper maintenance of machines and this can be detrimental to the organisation as it single-handedly disturbs the functioning or working of the warehouse.
You should first look to get it repaired immediately, and if that isn’t possible, you should look for a replacement.
Supervising warehouse’s functions
Set up an efficient organisation system
When talking about perfect functioning of a warehouse, the first thing to be considered is to supply the goods on time and to its right destination and this can only be achieved by setting up an efficient organisation system.
It should be easy to navigate around the warehouse and stock should be contained within durable, sturdy storage solutions. For equipment or stock that is heavy or particularly expensive, heavy duty tote boxes will ensure that your stock remains in perfect condition.
Inspect your stock regularly
The primary goal of many organisations is to ensure the supply of products whenever needed and for this, sufficient goods should already be in your warehouse. It is better to check the daily demands every morning and make sure that enough stock is available in the warehouse to meet them, than it is to leave it till last minute and risk possible mistakes being made.
Spend time with your staff
One person alone cannot handle everything in an organisation. A perfect warehouse operation is all about teamwork, where the entire team works together to achieve set goals, so organise a corporate day out every once in a while, to keep team morale high.