We have continued this popular new series into week six to bring you some more easy-to-implement inventory management tips. This week we take a look at some simple steps you can integrate into your supply chain to optimize workforce efficiency and inventory availability.
Tip #20: Customize Inventory “Kits”
Implement customized kitting strategies. Reduce inventory handling time by grouping and bagging components that are often utilized together into “kits”. This can be done for inventory as well as for supply chain operations that perform common repairs and other similar procedures.
Tip #21: Focus on Inventory Optimization
Get it right: having the RIGHT products, at the RIGHT time, in the RIGHT location helps to ensure warehouse efficiency and help keep your workforce productive. Having too little or too much inventory results in wasted time and labor.
Tip #22: Invest in Advanced IoT Technologies
Embrace “smart” technology in your warehouse to optimize energy efficiency, lighting, security measures and much more. The “Internet of Things” (IoT) is a major trend, including in warehouse facilities. Today, internet-enabled devices can enable your workforce to know the exact location and progress of products as they are handled and stored in your warehouse. Empower your workforce with “hands free” wearables. This will free up warehouse workers to move around the facility without having to use workstations. Investing in IoT can help you to reduce the use of manual labor and increase shipping speed and accuracy. Other IoT areas gaining ground include robotics systems and carts, autonomous robots and smart glasses.
Tip #23: Regularly Evaluate Vendor Performance
Continually evaluate and benchmark vendor lead time. One way of doing this is to create vendor score cards to measure performance. By monitoring and utilizing performance data, you can work with vendors to enhance performance. Working with vendors to ensure that your expectations are met will help you avoid out-of-stock events, reduce inventory holding cost and improve inventory turnover.
Tip #24: Verify Incoming Inventory Quantities
Double check shipment receipts. Don’t just assume that every shipment is accurate. Check packing slips and other information for errors. Catching errors at this stage can prevent inventory management problems further on down the line. Shipments with incorrect or missing inventory can result in order problems and wasted time and labor.
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