Anyone working in warehouse operations will know that sales promotions can be difficult to manage. Order peaks can be anything from five to fifteen times higher than an average week, maybe even more. This means that if you fall behind in your order processing, you might not recover for weeks after the sale has ended, all the while your customers have been left feeling dissatisfied.
Sales promotions are one of the best ways to ensure continued revenue growth over the course of a year. They can also be fantastic opportunities to drive customer engagement, reach new prospects and increase your store’s conversion rate. However, if your warehouse operations aren’t able to cope with the increased pressures they create you are losing out on a potential competitive edge.
To help you deal with promotions more easily, we have put together the following list of tips to enhance your fulfilment operations and get you set-up for sales.
Hot pick zones
Picking staff can spend up to 70% of their time walking around the warehouse. By keeping all of the fastest-moving items in the most accessible locations, you not only reduce the walking distance and time wasted, you will also increase productivity and lower your costs. This will also serve to reduce traffic jams in the warehouse.
Creating a better-considered and more comfortable workspace for packing staff will help to increase their productivity. Adding things like cushioned floor mats, adjustable-height tables, and large work surfaces with pigeonholes for inserts will all help to improve worker efficiency. Also, to maximise productivity, ensure all cartons and packing materials are replenished regularly in the packing area, so employees don’t have to leave the area to restock.
If possible, schedule replenishment tasks for less busy times in the warehouse. This will ensure picking staff aren’t hindered by pallets or equipment blocking the aisles. This is both good practice in terms of efficiency, as well as from an employee health and safety perspective.
Making sure your processes aren’t unnecessarily convoluted will not only speed up your full-time warehouse staff, it will also make it easier to train new or temporary employees, which can sometimes be needed during especially busy sales promotions. Replacing traditional manual processes with digital solutions, like barcode scanning, will give you considerably more flexibility in your operations and allow staff to be more productive, which will reduce the need for additional labour to manage sales promotions, perhaps removing it entirely.
Improve internal communication
Affecting change in your warehouse operations is only possible if your employees are informed of your standards, expectations and production metrics. Make sure this information is readily available for everyone to see, and organise regular meetings with managers to review performance. League tables with productivity rates are often a good staff motivator and having this information makes employee reviews much easier to administrate.
For more advice on how to optimise your warehouse for sales promotions, contact us anytime for a free, no obligation consultation. Our friendly team of fulfilment experts will be happy to help. To learn about all the benefits Peoplevox WMS could offer your e-commerce business, please download our WMS Buyers Guide.