The purpose of Warehouse Management is to assist in the management of inventory movement within a warehouse – be it shipping, receiving, picking and packing, etc.
The day-to-day management of operations in a warehouse can be difficult to track – especially if you carry a lot of products. Good warehouse inventory software helps to bridge the gap between your warehouse and management – allowing increased visibility between these two segments of the business.
According to an Oxford Economics report, smaller companies are emphasizing investment in business analytics (52%) and business management software (58%).
Striving for operational excellence is no longer an aspiration confined to just MNCs – by leveraging on technology, SMEs now have access to many of the tools that once gave larger companies their competitive edge at very affordable prices.
Many small business owners are under the impression that Warehouse Management Software only becomes a necessity when their storage system becomes unmanageably complex.
Nothing could be further from the truth – having a solid operations strategy in place is important for even the smallest business. Not only will there be significant cost savings, it also established the foundation to help you scale your business in the future.
Don’t let your warehouse become a bottleneck for growing your business.
We started off by selling just a few products – and as our number of SKUs gradually increased, the amount of admin time spent on it increased alongside it…until online inventory management became our biggest headache.
We’ve spoken with hundreds of small business owners who have gone through essentially the same process.
That’s why it’s so important to start early – implement a reliable Warehouse Management Software that can scale alongside your business so that you can save yourself tedious admin work as you grow.
The more complicated a task, the more tempting it is to centralize knowledge within one member of the team. Having a dedicated manager to your warehouse inventory management is great, but without a robust system that can help systematize your processes, you’re taking on a lot of unnecessary risk.
SMEs are also going international. In 2011, only 15% of SMEs did business in six or more countries, a figure that’s risen to 35% in the three years since.
As businesses expand geographically, logistics are bound to get more complex. How do you optimize your supply chain to minimize fulfillment costs and ensure that you keep your international customers happy?
It’s important that management staff have full visibility into stock levels across different warehouses. Being able to access this data in real time is crucial for informed decision making.
To optimize your inventory control techniques, your businesses needs to have good intelligence and data about purchasing and sales information. This way, you can plan and execute stock transfers across different locations and ensure that you’re making the most out of your inventory.
With businesses going international and operating across borders, multi currency support is also a must. Retailers and wholesalers are dealing with business partners all over the world – in all likelihood, the suppliers you source from and the customers you sell to don’t transact in the same currency.
Selling from different warehouses internationally means that having full visibility is integral to success, especially in the ultra competitive SME landscape.
As your business grows, your storage system will also become more complex. To manage this process, bin locations can be used so that your warehouse staff know exactly where to find the product. Warehouse management training is also something to be taken seriously.
Ideally, you should set up bin locations as early as possible and ensure optimal product placement so that you minimize the amount of work for your warehouse staff as they pick and pack goods.
A good Warehouse Management Software will also allow you to generate pick lists with each sales order as it reaches the shipping stage.
When your business is small and you have relatively few products, setting up this process can seem overly cumbersome, especially since the immediate benefits are minimal. Revamping your order management system to save a few seconds per order might not seem like the top priority when you’re processing a few dozen orders a day – but when that number grows, it can make a world of difference.
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