Warehouses can be chaotic places. Between the piles of boxes, the stacks of inventory, and the never-ending flow of merchandise, it's easy for things to get messy in a hurry. If you're running a warehouse, it's important to make sure you have good practices in place so that your operations run smoothly. This checklist will help you get started.
Understanding Warehouse Audit
If you are new to the warehousing business, you must understand the types of audits you can implement for fulfilling your warehouse duties. The audits are carried out upon inventory, policies, procedures, shipping, logistics, accounting, etc.
There is no stipulated schedule upon warehouse auditing. You do not have to do it weekly or daily, but they are done quarterly or monthly. It depends upon the size of the warehouse you are running and the available resources!
Moreover, a warehouse safety checklist is essential to eliminate risky hazards such as slips or trips, chemical exposure, lack of safety training, poor floor guarding, and others. As per the surveys, many employees experience severe injuries while operating different types of machinery at warehouses. Therefore, safety warehouse audits might prevent them all.
Best Practices Checklist for Warehouses
You need to make different adaptations in your audit process for streamlining the warehouse operations and their safe executions. The good practices under the warehouse safety checklist are broken down into three areas; efficiency, safety, and proactivity.
Such practices ensure preventative maintenance implementation, increased productivity levels, and professional warehouse management. Hence, these are the fundamental elements of implementing management proficiency for material handling. Therefore, the best practices checklist with auditing activities include:
The best warehouse picking practices will maximize the efficiency of warehouse operations. They are:
- It would help if you looked for automating the applications within the warehouse whenever it makes sense.
- Optimize the existing layout of your warehouse to reduce the travel time for the selectors.
- Adapt to the warehouse management systems for reducing the aspects of human error.
- Execute all of the cycle counting operations for enhancing inventory accuracy.
- You need to re-slot the pick positions as per the necessities.
- Keep track of the real-time data to capture and find other ways of optimization.
Safety is accountable as a priority for the warehouse operations, irrespective of its size. A good warehouse should always promote safety aspects that will eventually enhance productivity and ROI. Therefore, some of the safety warehouse practices that you must check and implement during your audit process are:
- Check the aisles used for the machine and foot traffic within the warehouse. It would help if you kept them clear of debris and clutter.
- The machinery operating areas should be separated using bollards and barriers.
- All of the employees working with the machinery should get the right and sufficient training before working in the field.
- All employees should be equipped with safety equipment and essentials, as per the recommended task, job role, and environment.
- The warehouse should have a good amount of ventilation throughout the space.
- The emergency that exists around the warehouse should be marked prominently.
- The weight limitations imposed upon machines or storage racks should be mentioned clearly.
- There should be clear postings upon placement of fire extinguishers, first-aid kits, and other such safety tools.
The proactive operations will trigger the best utilization of the supply chains and assist in proper warehouse management. By anticipating all of the future issues, it will be possible for you to respond faster. The proactivity audit practices include:
- Check if the lift trucks are in good condition and regularly used to avoid expensive maintenance.
- Count on getting backup forklifts to use during the busy period, and take up the sudden change demands.
- Seek excellent training for your staff for operating new machines. They should undergo training regularly within a specific period upon new inclusions within the warehouse operations.
- Enable strategic management for the logistics of your warehouse operations.
Rapid Checks for Completing the Warehouse Audit
Apart from the above practices, you can also count on implementing some direct measures to wind up your warehouse duties towards auditing. These quick checks are also accountable for helping you determine the streamlined productivity and operations of the business. They are:
- Count the physical inventory
- Keep track of all of the daily operations
- Get in healthy communication with the workers more often.
- Analyze the inventory data to validate transactions, check wastage and measure customer satisfaction.
- Look out for any necessity of design changes and implement them.
- Go for regular audits upon areas where the need is high, such as safety concerns.
When your warehouse is a busy, chaotic place where hundreds of boxes are constantly being moved around and new shipments come in every day, it can be hard to keep things organized. The checklist we've provided should help you get started on the right foot so that your operations run as smoothly as possible. If you're looking for software to help with this process, Conveyr's platform has been proven time and again to make warehouses more efficient by automating workflows so operators don't have to waste precious minutes doing manual tasks. Get in touch today if you want us to show how our solutions could improve your business!