Yankee Supply Blog

The 5 Important Needs for Warehouse Inventory Management

If you’re a warehouse manager or work in the supply chain and logistics field, you already know a thing or two about organization. After all, it’s a big part of your job, and like the Spider-Man of warehouse inventory management, with great coordination comes increased efficiency and productivity.

Even if warehouse inventory management is something you’ve been doing for years, it can’t hurt to have a refresher and reminder of all the ways in which you can maximize space and make the most out of your day-to-day operations. Here are the top 5 tips warehouse inventory managers need to be aware of.

5 Things Warehouse Inventory Managers Need to Know

In this top 5 list of tips that warehouse managers should know, we’ll review must-know details on how to ensure the warehouse operation you run is safe, productive, and efficient. Whether this means using the right equipment or the right processes, we’ve got you covered.  

1. Stay on top of inspection and repair

When it comes to warehouse management, productivity and efficiency are important. However, neither of those goals can be achieved if safety and precaution are not factored in. Inspection and repair isn’t about meeting an arbitrary measurement; it’s about making sure all working parts are functioning correctly, accurately, and safely.  

As an analogy, imagine that a piece of machinery is an employee. You notice that the employee is moving slower and they seem sick. As a manager, you would send them home so they could see a doctor and get their health in order before returning to work. The same can be said for the equipment you use. It’s impractical to use the same run-down machinery and parts. Upkeep is necessary for longevity. 

When inspections are up-to-date and repairs are prioritized, you’re going to be able to run a warehouse like a well-oiled machine. As all logistics professionals already know, the devil is in the details. The difference between good results and great results comes down to how detail-oriented the one’s running the shop are. 

2. Use the right equipment

Any old pallet and rack won’t get logistics managers the results they’re after if they’re trying to improve inventory management. You wouldn’t want to use a double-deep rack when your warehouse needs drive-in racks, would you? Just because something may work to get the job done, doesn’t mean it’s the most efficient way to do it.   

If your facility is brand new and you’re looking to outfit a warehouse with specific processes in mind, then some extra thought needs to be put into what equipment is used. For a better idea of your options, you can check out this buyer’s guide that goes into detail on what to expect from your equipment.  

Better equipment leads to better organization which leads to better operations; it’s that simple.  

3. Invest in custom fabrication

Not all warehouses have the same needs. While some things may be able to be reused and recycled, building and preparing things like custom rack heights, special safety guarding, and custom painting are all services that can be commissioned. Customization is key to ensuring your products, equipment, and employees stay safe during storage and transfer. 

As a warehouse manager, custom fabrication can help ensure that all pieces of the puzzle fit accordingly. Yankee Supply makes custom ULD racks for container and pallet storage. The customized aspect of these ULD racks is what ensures that oversized items are not damaged in the storage and retrieval process. Damaged products cause a big hit to the overall efficiency of an operation, and can be quite costly.

It’s better to pay a bit more for custom equipment that can withstand what you need it to withstand, rather than risking problems with an imperfect system.  

4. Learn about warehouse flow planning

Whether you’re looking to upgrade your warehouse to the next level or you’re starting from scratch, warehouse flow planning always starts with a goal and concept in mind. It can help to draw out a concept map, then work with professionals to bring your vision to life. Every warehouse’s needs are going to be different, so the first thing you need to determine is whether you need a simple flow plan or a more complex one. 

Simplicity can be great for efficiency, but planning something that is too simple can leave questions unanswered and cause disarray. On the other hand, an overly complicated and complex flow can cause unnecessary and time-consuming work. In most cases, you’re going to want to aim for a happy medium. This looks different for every situation, but in general you’re going to map out where items will be received, where they’ll be stored, how and where dispatch will take place, and whether the overall layout is conducive to efficiently handle your warehouse’s volume of material being transferred.  

5. Delve into value stream mapping

Value stream mapping helps professionals better understand how improvements can be made to a warehouse or supply chain system; it will analyze efficiency and help make decisions moving forward based on results. With value stream mapping, you’re not only analyzing how machinery, equipment, and costs all play a role in the efficiency of production, but you’re also analyzing people.  

The purpose of value stream mapping is not to scrutinize but to give another purposeful look at processes that one might take for granted. Once you have an idea of what needs to be changed, you can begin to implement those changes and track progress to make sure that the hypothesis is correct. 

What Warehouse Inventory Management Needs to be Ready to Get Started? 

There are a lot of components that go into running a smooth ship in the supply chain world. If you’re looking for tools that can increase productivity and efficiency in your warehouse with inventory management, then Yankee Supply has your back. We work with supply chain professionals all day every day, so we understand the issues and know just how to help anybody that comes our way.  

Contact us today and we’ll get you set up and on the right track. 

Article last modified: April 19, 2024

Yankee Staff

Our leadership and staff have over 100 years of combined experience in warehouse management and material handling equipment. Lean on us for filling any knowledge gaps you may have about the industry. You can always call us for specific questions related to your warehouse needs, 800.232.7225

Yankee Supply is an industry leader in warehouse and material handling supply. We have over 45 years of experience. Learn more about us here.

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