mistakes in logistics

5 Mistakes You Need to Avoid While Reducing Logistics Cost

For the growth of any company there are certain operations which should be given top priority in order to gain positive results. Costs are needed to be controlled so as to maintain a higher chance for profit. Logistics management deals with activities related to storage of goods along with procurement and transport. Do you think the reduction of logistics expenses is a good way to manage cost? Many companies do follow this notion and even work on it. In reality, it is one of the biggest mistakes which should be understood and corrected. The actual logistics cost is hidden in the fuel surcharges that are fixed and cannot be mended. But there are solutions to this problem which can surely help to reduce logistics cost. Similarly, there are several mistakes surrounding the logistics process that should be avoided.

1. In-House Logistics

Mistake: For a company that is handling international trade, the movement of goods across borders does count expensive. This is a problem which is faced by numerous companies that are part of the international market. If your company consists of an in-house logistics, then there are huge chances of higher costs.

Cure: The most effective cost saving technique is to outsource logistics to an expert supply chain. There is a certain need for an expert in international logistics who is well aware of the basic norms. Under the logistics department there can be certain issues which can arise due to various reasons. An in-house logistics might not tackle such an issue alone. This additional stress can be very well managed by the experts at the supply chain under a controlled cost.

2. Overcharging by Customs  

Mistake: This mistake is not that much highlighted but is made by several companies. The classification of goods isn’t done correctly on the commercial invoice which leads to unnecessary taxes that directly increase the cost. If some company complaints about import duties and tariffs, then they must surely go through all the stated terms related to it.

Cure: To avoid overcharging and bringing your logistics cost down you must manage the goods according to the custom standards. This will ensure the clearance of your goods in a cost-effective way. If your company deals in large-scale imports, then such measures are required so as to save a lot of cost.

3. Incorrect Procurement

Mistake: Cost of logistics enhance when carelessness at the storage centers is prominent. Suppose your products are packaged, shipped and received at the exact location. But it is later found out that the paperwork isn’t incorrect. Another case when some parts of the order are different or missing from the consignment. All of this is counted under processing error which can lead to higher logistics costs as the parcel might be sent back and everything will proceed from level one.

Cure: Correct procurement of goods is important which can reduce this addition logistics cost. You can fix a particular group of experts who can carefully check the products along with the paperwork that is involved in overseas trade. One can also take the help of a logistics partner in order to prevent such issues.

4. Non-Involvement of Automated Compliance Processes

Mistake: If your company is not using software solutions for trade compliance issues, then it can surely affect the logistics cost. Manual preparation of documents can take a lot of time that can delay delivery time along with lesser inventory levels.

Cure: The companies that have successfully implemented software solutions experience speedy outputs. On-time delivery along with the quick elimination of logistics errors is ensured through the inclusion of automated compliance procedures. Increased customer satisfaction is another aspect that is highlighted through this important addition.

5. Single Platform Availability

Mistake: If the key stakeholders aren’t managed at a common platform, then the supply chain techniques might not come into effect. Companies that are not operating on a single platform are surely wasting their resources. No integration leads to a vulnerable system due to the transfer of information through various channels. This process is time-consuming as well which leads to higher costs.

Cure: Data intelligence is very necessary that can function onto a single platform for positive results. Trying to curb duplication in order to secure the system is an important step. Time is saved by transferring information onto the common platform so as to reach all the connected stakeholders.

Final Say

The above-stated points are some of the common mistakes which should be cured in order to reduce logistic costs. These mistakes might not appear that much prominent but have a major effect on the overall logistics cost. You need to be alert and aware in order to prevent such situations. Always remember that for every problem there is a cure that is available through patient analysis.

ShipRocket is India’s first automated shipping software that aims reduce eCommerce shipping to its bare bones. We have taken a step forward in simplifying eCommerce for Indian merchants and saving their precious time and money.

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cycle counting inventory

Top 6 benefits of cycle counting vs. annual inventory counts

The key aim of almost every manufacturing and distribution company is to completely eliminate the very need for physical counting and rather depend on the cycle counting so as to keep the numbers of inventory up to date. Inventory counting tools, inventory management as well as the inventory software like the barcode scanners, can definitely help the companies achieve this goal. Of course, this does not eliminate the very need for inventory counting however, there are devices that make it easy for the companies to keep a check on the inventory of everyday basis. When the data of inventory is updated on regular basis, you’ll never have the need to carry out lengthy physical counts.

What is cycle counting?

Cycle counting is an ongoing process that involves validation of the accuracy of the inventory in the company’s accounting system or the ERP by regularly counting a certain portion of the inventory. The cycle can either be – daily or weekly, depending on your preferences.  So, with cycle counting, every item of your inventory is counted multiple times in a year.

6 Benefits of Cycle Counting over Annual Inventory Counts

Cycle counting offers several benefits. Let’s take a look at some of the benefits of cycle counting over annual inventory counts.

Reduced Disruption in operations
Every company that performs cycle counts on regular basis doesn’t need to shut down to perform the physical counts. It can obviously be too expensive to shut down your company for a day or two. So, when you are constantly cycle counting you’ll never have to shut down.   

Reduced errors
With cycle counting, the time period between the counts is reduced. As a result of this, the amount of time period of an error is also reduced substantially. If by any chance, the inventory is not accounted correctly, it is easier to catch the error by way of the cycle counting.

More confident buying decisions
In the cycle counting method, the inventory counts are done regularly. With this continuous assessment, you are able to better focus on the subset of the inventory. As a result of this, the buying decision you take is much more targeted and informed. Hence, cycle counting avoids stock outs way ahead of time and thus creates a better report for the buyers in your team.  

Saves time and resources
Annual inventory counts can be one messy process. It may need a lot of time to check the inventory counts. Moreover, if there is any possible discrepancy, finding the error just becomes a lengthy and time-consuming process. To avoid wastage of time and resources, cycle counting can be helpful.

Improved customer service
When you have well-maintained records, you know where your products are and how many products you have in stock. So, when the customers make an order, facilitating a quick delivery can be easy. When customers get an early delivery, they’ll naturally be more satisfied.

Sales increases
Your happy and satisfied customers are much more likely to recommend you to others. So, this can indirectly lead to a rise in the sales.  

Implementing your cycle counting program

Hopefully, the above-listed benefits of the cycle counting program have convinced you enough to include it in your company. It is time, you get over the annual inventory counts and bring to use the cycle inventory program so as to ensure optimal inventory management. Here are some tips that you need to keep in mind so as to develop your cycle counting plans.

  • For the cycle counting plan to prove worthwhile, it must be made a part of your daily or weekly routine. A lot of companies who do include cycle counting program fail because they make a mistake of not counting their inventory often enough. Those who rely on the sporadic cycle counts receive only sporadic results. Thus, you can benefit only if you count your inventory on regular basis – daily or weekly.
  • Next, you must create a schedule for your cycle counts. Each company is different thus the schedule that works best for you must be adopted. We, however, recommend a 13-week cycle counting calendar. This would mean that every item in your warehouse is counted at least once during this cycle of 13 weeks.
  • Third, plan and prepare well before you begin counting. Preparation is a valuable asset to assure a successful physical count. The same is also important for cycle counting. Do ensure that your warehouse is well organized and you have a proper plan in place for authentic inventory counting process.  

Final Say

Hopefully, the stated benefits of the cycle counting over the annual inventory counts will definitely nudge you to prefer the former. If you have noticed, any other benefit of cycle counting over annual inventory counts, do tell us about it in the comment box below.

ShipRocket is India’s first automated shipping software that aims reduce eCommerce shipping to its bare bones. We have taken a step forward in simplifying eCommerce for Indian merchants and saving their precious time and money.

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golden rules for asset tracking

7 rules to successfully track your business’s most valuable assets!

Asset Tracking solves several challenges of a business. It offers a framework that allows the companies to become efficient. Further, Asset Tracking also boosts the bottom line by employing the most efficient use of the existing resources so as to avail the best possible results.

How to choose an asset tracking solution?

To be able to effectively track the valuable assets of the business, one needs to get the foundation in place. This includes the systems as well as the tools that enable asset tracking as well as the software solutions that can streamline data analysis and collection.

7 Golden Rules of Asset Tracking

Here we have compiled a list of 7 asset tracking rules which includes informative asset tracking strategies and tactics for several industries that can benefit by way of asset tracking solutions. These tips will definitely assist you in selecting the best asset tracking software and tools to cater to the needs of your company.

1. Know what you want to track

Take note that it is important for you to be aware of the equipment uptime, downtime, maintenance schedule as well as the user of every asset. With the successful integration of an accurate asset management system into the factory or the warehouse’s daily routine, the company is not only able to reduce the overall cost but is also successful in increasing the availability of the production equipment held by it by way of improved services and maintenance programs. Tracking can then by done via segregation of the inventory on the basis of serial number, date code, and lot.

2. Make sure it does not take too much time

It is always important for you to look up for time-saving ways of doing every thing. So, before you implement any asset tracking method, you must ask yourself, how good is your asset tracking software when it comes to efficiency? If despite the use of the software, you need an excel sheet or a pen and paper, your tracking method is just not worth it. Abandon it right away and think of something more efficient!

3. Consider the absolute project management life cycle

Think of the life cycle of an asset as one long project. So, if there is a project (asset) that might last for over 20 years, you are apparently looking at it as a project that begins with construction and engineering processes. So, such a project then needs to include the cost that would go into maintenance, operation, refitting, culmination and finally replacement of the asset. If you do not have a flexible, fully functional and a well integrated ALM or EAM system, managing the life cycle of the asset right from the cradle to the grave can be one challenging experience.

4. Evaluate and Prioritize the requirements of the company

This is a four step process and includes:

First, you have to define the requirements of the fixed asset software packaging and then prioritize these requirements to cater to the needs of the company.
Second, evaluate how every product measures against your set requirements.
Third, conduct a test drive that allows you to try the various features to ensure that the chosen tracking method is an ideal fit.
Fourth, make your purchasing decision!

5. Track Assets just as they come into the business

Being able to identify everything that may need to be fixed asset tracking is one challenging task. So, an easier way out is tracking all the assets just as they enter the business. It is recommended to add a new fixed asset information to your tracking system even before the asset leaves the warehouse of the purchaser. This would mean that the asset doesn’t disappear before the acknowledgment of its presence.

6. Opt for unique asset tracking numbers rather than the asset’s serial number

Quite possibly, the serial number of one asset may be identical to that of another asset. So, if you use the serial number as an asset tracking number, the duplicate numbers may cause some confusion since there is no alternative to telling the two assets apart. This will not only compromise the data integrity but also lead to inaccurate inventory and customer balances. As a result of this, your rental income maybe affected leading to dissatisfied customers. What is the solution? Instead of identifying the assets by serial number you can use a unique tracking number to eliminate all the hassle. Moreover, if in a rare event, this unique tracking number goes missing, you can still look up for the asset via its serial number and then re-label it to retain the history of the asset.

7. Go wireless

There is a chance that your asset can go missing or is misplaced by the staff. How to deal with this? Hand over a mobile hand-held the device to every staff member so as to be able to track barcodes. You can have an application or a software in the mobile that has a detailed map of the warehouse space. This will show where each and every asset is placed and date on which it was placed there.

Final Say
Hopefully, these 7 golden rules of asset tracking will help you better manage your assets.

ShipRocket is India’s first automated shipping software that aims reduce eCommerce shipping to its bare bones. We have taken a step forward in simplifying eCommerce for Indian merchants and saving their precious time and money.

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common shipping terms

Understanding The Basic Shipping Terms

The process of ordering goods online and receiving them at your doorstep is an amazing process that requires smooth coordination between the merchant and shipping company. This blog enumerates the process of how you receive your orders, and the jargons you must be aware of, used in the industry.

Airway Bill Number (AWB Number)

AWB is an 11-digit code used for tracking the shipment. You can use this code to check the delivery status of the shipment and its current position. If you find that your order is ridiculously late, use AWB to report the complaint to the shipping and logistics company that your merchant has chosen.

Shipping Invoice

It is a document containing standard information, including the name and location of the sender and the receiver. Additionally, it contains an itemized list of the purchase order, i.e., the invoice reflects the total number of items ordered, their cost, any discounts, or taxes applicable, and the final billing cost.

shipping terms - invoice

 

Shipping Label

A shipping label is pasted on the top of the package and describes the contents of the package. It also contains the originating and destination addresses to help the courier carrier to deliver the package promptly.

shipping terms- shipping label

Shipping Manifest

A shipping manifest is a document that acts as a proof of handing over the shipment to the courier company. It contains the information of the pick-up courier person, i.e., name, contact details (mobile number), and his/her signature. The shipping and logistic company gives one copy to the merchant and keeps the other copy for its records.

shipping terms: manifest

Freight Bills

The shipping and logistic company issues freight bills to the consignee (usually the merchant of the order placed). This bill includes the description of the freight, shipper’s name, the point of origin, actual weight, and volumetric weight of the shipment, and the bill amount.

shipping terms freight-bill

Ready For Dispatch

This message is an indicator that the shipment is about to leave its place of origin. It flashes only after the processing of the AWB Number and assigning the shipment order to a shipping carrier (Courier Company).

COD Label

Cash on Delivery (COD) label can be printed on the top of the product package, or the courier person has the receipt. This label includes information related to the supplier, receiver, and itemized list of products and mentions the amount to be collected. It also includes other details like AWB number, weight, and product dimensions.

Generate Pickup

This process appears once the product to be shipped has been finalized for a specific day. This entails selecting the courier company responsible for completing the order delivery. The cutoff time for generating pickups is before 1:00 PM from Monday to Saturday and no pickup is generated on Sunday.

Missing Orders

These are the orders that couldn’t be processed at the initial stage of the shipping and Logistics Company. Some of the factors responsible for such an error involve the product order not checked out properly and failed payment process.

Return to Origin (RTO)

It contains the address of the sender. The product can be returned to the point of origin, i.e., the merchant’s address, if there is a discrepancy related to the product or order placement.

Keep these shipping terms in mind so you can immediately resolve any issues arising from your placed order.

The process of shipping is intriguing and interesting. We had already discussed the part II of common shipping jargons that you should be aware of.

ShipRocket is India’s best logistics software, which offers you automated shipping solution. Using this, you can ship anywhere in India and abroad using the best courier company and at discounted rates.

For any issues with the content, you can write to us on shalini.bisht@kartrocket.com.

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wholesale dc

5 reasons why Wholesale DC’s struggle in fulfilling e commerce orders for fashion brands

Most Wholesale Distribution Centers are incredible at the shipping and receiving apparel at the case level in a rather inexpensive and quick manner. This expertise however does no good in helping them prepare for all rising requirements of the e commerce fashion brands.

Here we have listed 5 key reasons why wholesale distribution centers struggle in fulfilling e commerce orders for the fashion brands.  

Product Storage and Shipment

The wholesale distribution centers are adept in storing and shipping the case level quantities of the products however e commerce fulfillment demands the warehouses to segregate and break down the case of the goods. When it comes to fashion garments, putting them away to facilitate their pick and pack can often be a difficult, expensive and a time consuming affair for most DCs.

Presentation of the orders

The wholesale DCs know, understand and acknowledge the massive difference in the packaging parameters as well as the labeling requirements of a fashion retail and the wholesale accounts. Though demanding and specific, these standards differ from the ones that are prerequisites of the e commerce consumers. Fashion orders are presentation specific and involve tissue papers, boxes of different colors, shapes and sizes, stickers, etc. Thus, in order to please the fashion consumers, a DC would need a completely different set of packaging material that might have never been used in the wholesale orders.  

Volatility of the order

The wholesale DCs are one step away from the end customers. They are used to longer lead times, regular shipping schedules and ship by date orders. On the other hand, the e commerce fulfillment operations do not have such an exemption. Every order shipped by them reaches the customer directly. This direct connection that e commerce orders have with the customers leads to higher order volume volatility. It therefore gets hard for the wholesale distribution centers to be able to keep pace with the quick volume fluctuations thereby making them incompetent to deal with the end customers.

Accuracy of the order

Order accuracy is of course a common ground for both e commerce and wholesale order fulfillment. However, there is a massive difference in the intricate details that lie within. When it comes to the wholesale fulfillment there is no direct contact between the end customer and the warehouse. The wholesalers deal with the stores and the stores deal with the consumers. So, in times of error, the customers are not affected directly. Such is not the case with e commerce order fulfillment. Here, any and every order fulfillment error may account for the dissatisfaction of the customers. For the e commerce customers, it is imperative for the brand to communicate with the customers.  

Return order

Last and definitely the most important aspect of the e commerce for the fashion brands is returns. Trend says that as many as 20 to 40% of the items ordered get returned. So, unlike the wholesale returns, the e commerce returns go straight at the distribution centers in the order packaging that may have not more than one or two units. Thereafter, every returned packaged is examined and carefully inspected so as to examine whether the seller will accept the returned items or not. Aspects such as – how long ago the item was purchased, is the item worn, are the tags in place, etc are checked. Once the seller accepts the returns, the fulfillment center has to place these items back in the inventory.  On the other hand, the Wholesale Distribution Centers are not used to tackling the returns that demand such intricate detailing. Neither are they accustomed to handle thousands of small packages on every day basis.  

Final Say

The wholesale distribution centers as well as their processes are thus not designed to cater to the demands of the e commerce fulfillment for the apparel and the fashion brands. Thus, it is imperative to find a partner who understands the expectations of the fashion and apparel customers as well as the unique process of order fulfillment in e commerce.

ShipRocket is India’s best logistics software, which offers you automated shipping solution. Using this, you can ship anywhere in India and abroad using the best courier company and at discounted rates.

For any issues with the content, you can write to us on shalini.bisht@kartrocket.com.

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omni-channel

Key strategies for success in the omni channel fulfillment market

A lot of retailers fail to pacify their operations in pace with the evolving trends in the eCommerce market as well as the rising demands of the eCommerce customers. Due to this, the margins from the direct to customer channels are at a high risk of falling short of expectations. Fulfillment is often at the heart of such problems.  

The customers of today who make a purchase from an online source have helped in redefining the fulfillment landscape since a dozen of more channel variations has emerged in the past few years. With the rise in evolution, it becomes important to carefully plan and manage the Omni-channel fulfillment program of the company. But what is Omni-channel? Let’s find out!

What is Omni-Channel?

what_is_omni_channel
Omni has been derived from the word Omnis that means universal or all. So, Omni-Channel means a multi-channel approach to sales which aims to provide the customers with a seamless shopping experience irrespective of where the customer is shopping from. Meaning, whether the customer is shopping from a brick and mortar store, a mobile application or a desktop website, the experience he gets ought to be flawless.

Benefits of Omni-Channel Fulfillment

When properly executed and seamlessly enabled, the Omni-channel fulfillment strategy can reap in several significant benefits to your customers and retail companies.

  • Improvement in the rate of Customer satisfaction
  • Avoidance of capital investment and repurposing
  • Better delivery mechanism – right product at the right place at the right time
  • Improvement in the revenue performance
  • Reduced number of back orders and stock outs
  • Savings in transportation cost
  • Retail store morale improvements
  • Store productivity gains via in-store pick up and shipment from store
  • Gains in inventory productivity by leveraging of inventory across different channels

Key Strategies for success in the Omni-Channel Fulfillment Market

Now, that you are aware of the multitude of benefits Omni-Channel Fulfillment Market can bring it is important for you to know and understand the strategies so as to find success in the Omni-channel fulfillment market. Here we have compiled 4 key strategies that will serve as a guide for both software suppliers and practitioners to continually grow in the market and evolve to best satiate the customers.

Growth in eCommerce

The paradigm shift seen in the current Omni-Channel retail is largely driven by the out-pour in the eCommerce. This is arguably the most vital supply chance management trend that has come up in the past one decade. Ever since the advent of the internet, the brick and mortar sales have been relatively flat whereas the digital sales are growing progressively.  This trend in eCommerce is indeed stimulating interest in technology so as to modernize and streamline order fulfillment.

Adequate Investment in Fulfillment Technology

Despite the fact that eCommerce is growing at a soaring rate there is not enough investment where it needs to be. There are several technologies such as DOM, TMS and demand planning that are still not utilized optimally. Had these been utilized to their full potential companies would have undoubtedly become a lot more efficient by allocating the inventory to warehouses, stores and the distribution centers thereby efficiently, effectively and reliably moving the freight from the source to the destination. It also involves capturing of the necessary information in the order management process across every relevant channel.  

Don’t limit the innovation

Innovation is one of the most important aspects of expanding the current footprint of the Omni-Channel Fulfilment market. Companies need to keep seeking new technologies and innovations so as to keep pace with the changes happening in the market. The crowd-sourced options for delivery are indeed a cost effective option for home delivery, however, these solutions haven’t been explored enough. Several companies are waiting eagerly to find out how the companies pan out but the key emphasis needs to be on taking bold moves backed with high reward potential. This means that there is a plenty of white space that can be well utilized by the suppliers. It can be catered to by way of acquisitions or new and improved solutions.

Focus on Markets with higher growth potential

It is believed that the Omni-Channel Fulfilment market will showcase a phenomenal growth by crossing over $3.7 billion by the beginning of the year 2020. To be able to achieve this objective, companies need to focus largely on the markets that depict higher growth potential. For this, the companies must research all the Tier 2 and 3 markets. With most of the key players targeting the Tier 1 market, there are several small and mid-sized companies that are venturing into the Omni-channel world. The customers of the second and third tier market will definitely claim a share in the market thereby providing ample growth prospects for suppliers.  

Final Say

This new paradigm of Omni-Channel Fulfillment market is here to stay. So all the software suppliers, as well as the practitioners, must find ways and means to establish themselves in the market, else they’ll lag behind. For this, investment in technology, targeting the markets with high growth potential like the Tier 2 and Tier 3 retailers, investment in innovation and finally keeping pace with expanding eCommerce is mandatory.  

ShipRocket is India’s best logistics software, which offers you automated shipping solution. Using this, you can ship anywhere in India and abroad using the best courier company and at discounted rates. For any issues with the content, you can write to us on shalini.bisht@kartrocket.com.

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choosing warehouse location

Top 7 factors to consider when choosing a location for warehouse

The true cost is one of the most important factors that most people consider when seeking an industrial development site however, there are several factors that need due consideration whenever you are selecting a location for your warehouse. Here are 7 such factors.

Layout and flow of Building

The optimal layout of any warehouse is determined by the type of operations that would be conducted inside it. Know that older building usually are not every useful to carry out the modern material flow. Ceiling height, as well as column spacing, can restrict the type of equipment that can be accommodated in the given space. This can also hamper the flow of raw materials in and finished products out. So, before you decide on making a particular building as your warehouse, it is important for you to thoroughly determine whether the layout will rightly fit in the given space or not.

Availability of Skilled Workforce

Buying a building in a remote area is definitely going to be pocket-friendly. However, finding skilled workforce there can be a task. So moving trained or trainable workforce from a different location can then be a pricey affair. Therefore, it is recommended to have your warehouse in the area that will have the adequate supply of mix skill sets of labor so as to facilitate the operations adequately. The locations that have linkages to high-density residential areas with negligible worker transience can definitely be an ideal area of your warehouse. In case you plan on locating in an area with the seasonal supply of workers, do ensure that this seasonality does not hamper your organization’s needs as this can otherwise escalate the labor costs.

Zoning and Intensity of Use

How intense are your operations going to be in the warehouse? What is the intensity going to be like in the future? In case, your operation demands light assembly, you can go with the less intensive allowed usage. However, you must also consider other factors like emissions, noise levels and the availability of outdoor storage. These needs will influence the districts that you can target for your future operations.   

Proximity to Major Linkages

Which are the most predominant means of transport used by you? Do you prefer land, rail, water or air transportation to move your goods? So, whatever be your need it is important to have your site easily accessible to such a means of transport. Besides this, proximity to your customers is another factor that you must consider.

For instance, if most of your products are exported by sea and the remainder are delivered via land to the retail locations, it is imperative for you to have easy railway and highway access. Always remember that more than 20% of your cost comes from transportation of the goods. Moreover, high gas prices as well as the massive increment in the driver wages, every now and then may nudge your decision towards rail transport as opposed to shipment by truck. Moreover, if the goods are less perishable and shipments are not too sensitive then opting for rail transport can be an ideal choice.  

Material Handling Capabilities

Another factor that you should consider when choosing a location for the warehouse is the availability of the handling equipment and staging facilities. In case the primary model is a truck, you have to check if the facility has the depressed docks? Is there a need for docks to be internal? It is certain that a highly intense distribution use will often require cross docks. Further, are there enough storage facilities available?

Size

This, of course, is an obvious criterion. Your warehouse facility must be capable of accommodating the inventory and fit in the size of your company. For all startups and new companies, it is important to ensure that there is enough room around the facility for expansion. This will help save time and money when your business is riding high on the ladder of success.  

Regulations

Before you buy any warehouse facility it is important for you to enquire about all the regulations and policies that are prevalent in that location. There may be certain locations that do not allow storage of certain types of goods. If you deal in those goods, it is best to avoid them so as to avoid any future hassle.

Final Say

Bottom line, these are just a few of the many factors that you need to consider when looking a new warehouse location. Even following these basics will definitely help you get an ideal location. Apart from these 7 factors if there are any other factors that you consider important, do let us know in the comment box below.

ShipRocket is India’s best logistics software, which offers you automated shipping solution. Using this, you can ship anywhere in India and abroad using the best courier company and at discounted rates. For any issues with the content, you can write to us on shalini.bisht@kartrocket.com.

Happy Shipping 🙂

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warehouse-mistakes

How to maximize warehouse space when expansion isn’t an option!

One old saying that goes in the working of the warehousing is that ‘If there is available space in a warehouse, someone will eventually fill it.” Thus, it is not uncommon for the warehouses to be full even during the slow periods.

When does a warehouse run out of space?

A warehouse usually runs out of space because of:

  • Seasonal Peaks
  • Rapid Growth
  • Bulk Discount Buying
  • Planned inventory builds due to manufacturing shutdowns
  • Slow sales period
  • Facility Consolidation

Types of Space Deficiency in a warehouse

Largely, there are three key types of space deficiencies that are noted in a warehouse.

  • Holding too much of right inventory
  • Holding too much of wrong merchandise
  • Using the existing warehouse space ineffectively

In order to address these space issues, it is important for you to understand these issues and the reasons for such issues.

Holding too much of right inventory

When you have the right product in abundance, it appears healthy especially when it comes to customer service as well as order fulfillment goals since the product is always readily available to cater to the customer orders in time. Though the sales staff and the buyers feel happy on fulfilling every order timely, however, the warehouse tends to operate well below the established safety and productivity standards. So, when you look closely at such type of warehouse, it will reveal pallets of product stacked in dock areas and aisles. Moreover, there are multiple SKUs of product that is mixed in one single bin location. As a result of this, the visibility is blocked leading to the lack of ease in finding the needed inventory, multiple handlings of the products, safety hazards as well as decreased labor productivity. The upside however is that such products move quickly across the warehouse and space problems are present just for few weeks.

Holding too much of wrong merchandise

Stocking up too much of a wrong merchandise is a clear proof of incorrect sales production and poor production planning. It also means that the warehouse is incapable of managing the inventory levels rightly. When the levels of right inventory are high it can be handled via extra labor but the wrong inventory only results in inventory lying uselessly in the warehouse for months and sometimes even years. Obsolete inventory often has little or no value in the open market, however, the earlier you identify it the quicker it is for the company to cover up the losses and manage the assets.

Using the existing warehouse space ineffectively

Poorly utilized space is one common occurrence in almost every warehouse. It is nonexclusive of the type of inventory or the storage conditions existing in the warehouse. Largely, the warehouses are built and equipped only to handle a certain amount of products and limited unit loads. Then with time the warehouses are expected to accommodate keeping pace with the customer demands without affecting the efficiency. This poses to be a problem that gets hard to tackle.

How to maximize the storage space when there is no room to expand?

1. Revamp Racks
When you are seeking space optimization, racking is the first thing to consider. However, before you opt for rack revamping, it is important to consider the idea that determines whether or not the attempt will be worth while or not. So, make a thorough note of pallet heights and every rack elevation. Ideally, the arrangement must have 4 inches to 6 inches of gap between the top of the pallet to the base area of the beam. In case, the racks have occupied a space more than that, then you have possibly found an opportunity for availing the additional space. Before opting for space revamp do consider the fire safety precautionary space, forklift’s operating height, etc.

2. Go vertical
You can maximize the warehouse space by raising the roof. Improvement of the height of the warehouse can definitely serve the purpose of space maximization. This will provide you with the additional levels of pallet storage. However, you must consider the engineering limitations to ensure that the additional height doesn’t become illegal.

3. Storage Space – (Excess + Unwanted) inventory = More Warehouse Space
Get rid of the excess of the right inventory as well as the wrong inventory so as to maximize the warehouse space. You can always order for products in batches so as to ensure that you don’t stock up the warehouse beyond what’s necessary.

4. Use of AS/RS Systems
Automated and Retrieval Systems include a series of mechanisms such as conveyors, lifters, etc. These systems tend to reduce the space that is occupied by aisles. This advantage of AS/RS makes it one of the most sought after idea for undertaking space maximization. There are certain downsides of AS/RS systems. Such systems are expensive and require immense care.

Final Say

You can use any one or a combination of these warehouse space optimization techniques to ensure that there is sufficient space in your warehouse.

ShipRocket is India’s best logistics software, which offers you automated shipping solution. Using this, you can ship anywhere in India and abroad using the best courier company and at discounted rates.

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Insight About Logistics and Supply Chain Management

In this present business oriented era there are certain factors which must be given supreme importance.  Operational efficiency is crucial in order to stay ahead and gain effective outputs. For well-established as well as budding enterprises it is necessary that they seek advantages from supply chain management (SCM) schemes. It does not matter if your business is small or big. A smart and sensible approach towards logistics and SCM will work wonders. Let us try to understand these two concepts in a well detailed manner.

Logistics and Supply Chain Management is not correctly known by many people that does create a lot of confusion. In simpler words, Logistics refers to functions within a single organization whereas supply chains deal with networks of companies that operate together. Under logistics the main focus is on actions such as procurement, distribution and inventory. Supply Chain Management has a wider branch that deals in marketing, finance as well as customer service.

Logistics

Logistics is company centric that can be defined in a number of ways. Logistics Management is the apt term that focuses on the efficient management of the different processes that are related to the production and transportation of the company’s finished goods. There are two sub-categories under logistics which needs to be learnt for better understanding.

  1. Inbound Logistics: Inbounds Logistics is basically the incoming of raw materials and other goods from the suppliers to the company.
  2. Outbound Logistics: It deals with the movement of processed goods from the company to the market, that is, customers.

Transportation & Logistics

Transportation and logistics are combined together when referring on a broader canvas. But in reality these two elements work together but under segregated processes. Transportation basically deals with the movement of goods via land/air/sea along with customs and warehousing facilities. On the other hand, logistics has a slightly different functioning when transportation is tagged on. It deals with consulting and information technology.

How to Improve Logistics?

Under logistics, there are several ways which can be implemented in order to improve costs as well as delivery speed. Transportation Management Systems (TMS) are quite helpful in improving logistics. They are useful in finding the best routes & lanes for swift shipments. TMS is rated as quite beneficiary when it comes to shipping management. It is also a good support for trading partner collaboration and freight optimization. You can count on TMS for offering huge savings to the logistics partner as well as customer.

Supply Chain

What exactly is a Supply Chain? It is a network of organizations that are connected through various links due to the involvement in different processes that deal in products and services. On a broader view if we need to define Supply Chain Management, then we will focus on the main elements that are integrated together to form this system. The structure involves Supplier, Manufacturer, Wholesaler and Retailer. Under SCM, there is a flow of information, material as well as money.

Importance of Information Sharing

If the information is not passed down to different elements present in the supply chain structure then there might be a hike in cost. For example- Suppose the demand data of 100 units is not passed down from the retailer’s end and each player in the structure tends to keep a stock higher than the required quantity. This will ultimately result in higher cost for every player in this chain. On the other hand, if the information is passed down, then everyone will keep the stock according to the demand and cost will be lowered.

How to Improve Supply Chain Management?

  • In order to improve SCM you need to hold onto certain factors. One of them is the integration of logistical processes when it comes to suppliers. It does not matter what is the size of your business. The availability of logistical connection with the suppliers for any enterprise is important in order to facilitate quick transfer of information.
  • There are several enterprise resource planning (ERP) applications that are helpful in forming communication between a company and its supplier network. This will prove helpful for improving operational efficiencies for both the parties.
  • The selection of an ERP system must be done wisely. You need to check if the selected ERP matches with the existing applications & processes.

Final Say:

We have discussed in depth about Logistics & Supply Chain Management that covers all the important points. It is necessary for companies, mainly small-scale companies to focus on the above-listed pointers. Based on that proper plans can be framed that will help in managing the costs under these two fields. Both Logistics & SCM require expert guidance & support for positive results in favor for the company’s growth and success.

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Do’s and Don’ts of Supply Chain Outsourcing!

Supply chain management is one of the most integral part of any organization that manufactures and delivers its products to consumers. Typically, in FMCG companies, having a supply chain is quite important for various reasons. Managing a supply chain effectively and efficiently can be demanding as well as time-consuming. This is the reason why some companies choose to outsource the whole process of the Supply chain. However, there are fair shares of advantages and disadvantages associated with it and you can make the most out of it if you know the do’s and don’ts of supply chain outsourcing.

Why Supply Chain Outsourcing?

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Just like any other departments, an even supply chain can be outsourced by third party companies. The major reasons for outsourcing can be:

• reducing costs
• more time to focus on vital business aspects
• having the specialized experts handle it

Usually, a department is outsourced when a company thinks that it can benefit by handing it over to a better company. If you feel that there is the lack of proper supply chain resources and personnel in your company, it makes absolute sense to outsource it to a professional service. You can then benefit from it in many ways but there are certain limitations too. Balancing both of them to make your company more efficient is what supply chain outsourcing must accomplish.

Do’s of Supply Chain Outsourcing

If you are trying to outsource your supply chain completely to a third party, you must keep some specific things in mind. Here are some of them.

Reduce unanticipated fees
This should be one of the major focus of a company who is trusting the third party to handle the supply chain. There can be many kinds of hidden fees along with the actual price which can be pricey. Since a supply chain depends upon various factors, there can be costs that are totally unanticipated and you must try to reduce it as much as you can.

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Minimize overall costs
This is a must ‘do’ thing not only in the outsourcing supply chain but in all the other aspects of a business as well. One of the major purposes of hiring a professional service to manage your supply chain is to reduce overall costs. Thus, you must ensure that every task is efficiently handled and there is no wastage of money at any end.

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Meet the demands of the customer
The end result of every product is to ensure proper customer satisfaction but to satisfy them their demands must be met. You must make sure all the demands of the customers are met without any hassles. Sometimes there can be the lack of resources or planning which can cause hurdles in meeting the demands of the customers. Thus, the outsourced company must address these problems and provide proper solutions.

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Don’ts of Supply Chain Outsourcing

There are various things which you must strictly avoid doing when you are planning to outsource the supply chain for your company. Here we have listed some of them.

Don’t outsource to multiple companies
Although it can be luring to outsource your supply chain to many companies at once to reduce costs but this is a bad decision. A single entity or a set of experts are well capable of handling everything rather than many different companies or individuals. Thus, you must never outsource your supply chain to multiple companies. You can benefit from a single company in many ways and if you have to shell out a little extra money, it would be a wise thing to do.

Don’t let quality suffer
Whenever a third party is involved, the quality suffers. However, you can try and minimize the effects of it to a good extent. There can be strict company guidelines for the outsourced company so that everything stays perfect. Quality checks and verification need to happen to ensure that proper quality is maintained. Quality shouldn’t suffer just because a separate company is handling it.

Don’t interfere much

The very reason why outsourcing is done because a company can focus on other things that it specializes in. Thus, you should try and avoid interfering in the tasks of the third party company. This will not only create misunderstandings but will result in mishaps that can be difficult to overcome. You must focus on other aspects of your business while your supply chain is taken care of by experts.

Final Say

Although outsourcing supply chain can be a boon to some companies, if not used properly it can create huge problems. Thus, at first, you need to decide whether or not you want to outsource your supply chain department. Once you do it, you then need to ensure that you follow these do’s and don’ts for the best results by outsourcing. Failing to comply with these can backfire and the main purpose of outsourcing shall be ruined.

ShipRocket is India’s first automated shipping software that aims reduce eCommerce shipping to its bare bones. We have taken a step forward in simplifying eCommerce for Indian merchants and saving their precious time and money.

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