In the ever-dominating space of E-commerce, the challenges faced by fulfillment companies are ever-growing. What seems like a simple buying experience online is followed by an intricate set of logistical operations behind the curtains. For consumers, buying a product is as simple as putting the product in the cart and clicking the ‘place order’ button. However, it is only after that, that the actual operation of fulfillment begins.
E-commerce warehouses and fulfillment centers have a lot at stake. They are responsible for not only storing SKUs (Stock Keeping Units) but keeping an efficient supply chain to maximize customer satisfaction and profit growth. These two variables, space (storing and stocking SKUs) and efficiency (proficient supply chain management), are perhaps the most significant variables a warehouse company must manage.
Time is of the essence in our digitally-driven consuming world. E-commerce warehouse and fulfillment companies need to develop strategies to meet the demanding storage and supply chain management requirements to meet consumers’ needs. In this article, we will discuss how E-commerce warehouses and fulfillment centers should tackle the behemoth of storage problems and increase their streamlined processes.
Utilizing Shelf & Racking Space
E-commerce warehouse and fulfillment companies must maximize the warehouse space for smooth and optimal organization. Even though warehouses typically cover thousands of square feet, getting the most out of the area becomes challenging. As a warehousing company, your main goal is to use the maximum space for stock-keeping while avoiding processes that may hinder streamlined picking. To hit that fine line is the real challenge. Here’s how you can utilize shelf and racking space while allowing enough room for seamless operation.
Look around your warehouse and see if you can find any unused vertical spaces. It’s important to utilize any room available for your stock-keeping. But, at the same time, you need to be careful about the fire code of your warehouse’s layout. These un-utilized spaces will help you with shelf product space, optimizing and streamlining your process.
Revisit Your Aisle
Sometimes, we find too much aisle space for operating processes to be unnecessary. You can try to reduce your aisle width to the minimum possible. However, it’s also crucial not to compromise operating efficiency.
Value of a Good Pathing Plan
It is also necessary for warehouse and fulfillment centers to have a clear pathing plan for their operations. Your operations must follow a one-flow model where your procedures follow a clear linear path from point A to B. The one-flow design and layout enable warehouse and fulfillment centers to maximize efficiency and meet customer demand and order fulfillment.
However, even with that, warehouse and fulfillment companies find it challenging to meet the customer demands of dominating e-commerce sellers. In such times, it is vital for e-commerce warehouse and fulfillment companies to make smart, sustainable decisions without succumbing to dire challenges. So, how can you tackle the never-ending immediate customer demands? To combat digital, you must become digital.
The Need for Warehousing Automation
As a warehouse and fulfillment center, your main goal is to maximize proficiency without delay and error. What if we tell you there is a way to do that through automation? The concept of automation is to optimize operational processes through technologies without the help of manual labor and operations.
Automation reduces human error and inconsistencies, saving capital and time. When you automate your warehouse, you can meet customer demands and excel in your warehouse operations. When you employ manual labor, there is always the chance for error. However, with machines and robots, you eliminate the possibility.
Automation Opens Robust Packaging Opportunities for Products
Due to increased e-commerce demands, warehouses and fulfillment centers often struggle with product packaging. By employing automated packaging solutions, warehouse and fulfillment companies can easily tackle the increased demand without scaling up their manual workforce in peak seasons. Though an initial investment is warranted, in the long run, the investment pays off significantly.
Artificial Intelligence in Warehousing Automation
Artificial intelligence is a transformative technology that has taken the world by storm. AI is a technology that saves data, learns from them, and acts accordingly. Like humans, these machines can process data and adapt to changing situations. Now, imagine AI incorporated into a device? It is the most sophisticated piece of machinery you can find. So why should I consider AI in my warehouse? Let’s discuss some of the possibilities AI offers to your business.
Why AI Is The Future
There is a reason why artificial intelligence (AI) is dominating the market. It is not a technology confined to tech giants, but it is here to help every business in every industry. Discuss some benefits AI can offer your warehouse and fulfillment operations.
Enhanced Inventory Management
Artificial intelligence can help your warehouse and fulfillment center to analyze market trends and have the best control over your product inventory. The best part – these processes will be done in real-time, making you one step ahead with each and every movement.
Humans make mistakes. It is as Shakespeare said, “to err is human, to forgive divine.” You might forgive your employees, but it is better if the mistakes are avoided in the first place. Artificial intelligence, especially in automation robots, can be more effective with faster and more accurate results than humans.
Artificial intelligence is not here to help you with your physical operations; it can also contribute to providing data. AI’s algorithmic analysis will help your warehouse and fulfillment center better understand your workflow, identify patterns, and suggest strategic plans to counter problems.
To compete in the digital world of e-commerce, you must equip yourself with digital tools. AI and automation are transforming businesses worldwide, and for good reasons. It is now time you apply the same for your warehouse and fulfillment company!