Warehouse Receiving Best Practices (and Checklist!)
by Carggo, on Jun 24, 2019
Warehouse operations, when managed correctly, are critical facet in company credibility – and profitability. Any weak point in your operation slows the process, with workers less productive, shipments late, unhappy customers, and reduced profit. One of the main factors in managing a smoothly-running warehouse is centered around managing the receiving process. Inefficiencies in receiving shipments adds time, confusion, risk, and costly errors.
Checklist for an Efficient Receiving Process
1. Avoid Procrastination When Receiving Shipments
In an ideal world, your team should be ready to receive an incoming shipment and move immediately into the process of receiving. The factors that slow the process can include shipments arriving outside the scheduled time, leading to a backlog, with excessive carrier detention time. Maintain two receiving bays with separate teams, one for scheduled cargo and the other as an on-demand team for unscheduled deliveries, or carriers who arrive late.
2. Conduct Thorough Employee Training
Your employees should be thoroughly trained so the process of receiving is performed safely and efficiently. Each employee should understand what is expected and follow directions from the team leader to increase speed. Employees must be thoroughly trained to correctly operate forklifts and other equipment. Workers should be thoroughly trained to perform several functions to increase flexibility and the ability to reallocate personnel safely when needed.
3. Run An Audit Of Your Warehouse
Weak points in your warehouse operation can be identified and restructured with a regular warehouse audit, covering all the critical points in efficiency, including inventory counts, observing every aspect of your operations, and interviewing employees to identify hidden trouble spots impacting efficiency. Many inefficiencies are the result of methodologies that may have been established decades ago. With the use of advanced digital technology and artificial intelligence, every aspect of the warehousing process can be simplified, faster, accurate, and far more efficient. Look to technology to resolve the problems identified in your audit.
4. Schedule Vendor Receiving Appointments
Your warehouse manager must be in close communication with suppliers regarding all packaging requirements, arranging for shipments to arrive at your scheduled time. Carriers should arrive with full, accurate, shipping documentation and cargo organized and accessible for immediate unloading. With Carggo, your shipment is monitored with real-time tracking and alerts – no surprises, with shipments arriving safely and on time. With AI, our goal is to assist you to optimize the receiving process to match your docking hours. You will always know exactly where the shipment is, allowing for increased flexibility.
5. Invest In Quality Equipment
Low quality, poorly-maintained equipment is prone to breakdowns and poses serious risks to employee safety. For efficiency in receiving, invest in quality equipment, with regularly scheduled maintenance and cleaning. A breakdown in a vital piece of equipment leads to chaos, with carriers and employees standing idle while the problem is resolved. Keep backup equipment maintained and ready for this eventuality. Consider telescopic conveyors for loose cargo for faster processing and to avoid worker injuries.
6. Utilize Cross-Docking To Increase Productivity
With a correctly organized schedule and an eye to constantly increasing productivity, with correct planning and scheduling, cross-docking will save you time, warehouse space, and the costliest aspect of warehousing – labor. With a precise, well-managed schedule, cross-docking can occur seamlessly and efficiently.
7. Prioritize Warehouse Safety
Any accident occurring at your warehouse poses a risk of serious injury or death, increasing workers’ comp insurance costs, slowing operations, and creating a negative impact on employee confidence. Employees who see they are valued by management are more productive, happier, and less likely to make serious errors. Regularly-scheduled safety meetings, training, and a constant focus on keeping your operation safe for workers has a positive impact on employee satisfaction, confidence and retention.
Every shipment must be verified, evaluated to ensure the shipment is free from damage, and accurately logged. Your warehouse product inspection system, to be efficient, should be digitally produced and verified automatically. Working with a shipping company that uses AI technology to manage shipping makes the process of receiving far more efficient. Proof of Delivery (POD) should be signed – after verification and inspection. At Carggo, our system generates full documentation with individual item count, number of pallets, product codes, and condition of shipment to help increase efficiency in the process of warehouse verification – no guesswork and fewer man hours.
Rather than struggling with shipping companies that arrive at unscheduled times, leading to detention time, stress, and increased risk of errors or accidents, your shipments can arrive on time, full documentation for ease of verification. Our brokerage was built to meet the needs of shippers, carriers, and assist warehouse managers to have peace of mind.