With online shopping showing no signs of slowing down, there is no doubt going to be some pressure on the logistics industry trying to cope with the increase in sales. This is where warehouse technology can make a positive impact on your business.
The Covid-19 pandemic saw closures of non-essential shops, meaning that the already-busy e-commerce market became even busier. In fact, in 2020, the demand for warehouses doubled in the UK. We’re going to take a look at how businesses can use warehouse technology to ensure that they are running smoothly.
One of the biggest challenges to expect is staff shortages. More so, the increase in demand will require an increase in staff. Until a business meets staff requirements, there may be delays in packing and dispatching orders. In turn, this affects running times. Will you have night shift staff to help process orders in the evening?
Sales patterns have been pretty predictable in the past. We know sales increase around big events such as Christmas, and they remain stable throughout the year allowing warehouses to prepare. But now due to the unpredictable shopping habits, warehouse technology is ever more important to be prepared for any event. This means having an adaptable team who can be flexible to work. It is also a good idea to invest in warehouse technologies which can help speed up processes.
Increase in Returns
Another challenge warehouses face due to the increase in online sales is the increase in returns. Whereas before it may have been the odd few, returns may now be coming in as much as the orders – especially if a business offers free returns. As well as expecting easy and simple delivery, customers also expect convenient and hassle-free returns. Investing in a returns team may be a great idea to ensure the process runs smoothly.
Have the Correct Tools
Whether it’s investing in the correct Tente wheels and castors or upgrading the inventory technology, like using third-party logistics software, you should ensure you have the correct tools, equipment and technology for the job. This can help speed up the process, ensure everything is up to date and accurate and can reduce mistakes. Warehouse technology is going to play the biggest role it has ever played now, keeping track of stock to update websites has never been more important and technology can help keep a 24/7 operation functioning.
There are many challenges facing warehouses, but you should consider what is important to each operation:
- Do you need to operate 24/7? If the answer is yes, you make to adapt your workforce
- Have you got the technology in place?
- Do you have enough staff?
- Have you got enough space to run efficiently?
E-commerce is showing no signs of slowing down. By adapting to function during this very busy period will ensure you’re prepared.