Efficient, Automated Processes Define Modern Warehousing

by Justin Ward, on October 30, 2017

Even as commerce trends change, warehouses remain eternally relevant.
Even as commerce trends change, warehouses remain eternally relevant.

Storing goods and shipping them out on demand is an essential practice for just about any company with a physical item as its main product. Due to the universal nature of this process, it's no surprise that technology of all kinds has been devoted to boosting efficiency. It's now up to companies to embrace best practices and reap the benefits: Time and money saved in warehouse management will have positive ripple effects up and down the supply chain.

Warehousing Remains Relevant
One of the main reasons to keep up with current warehouse practices is that these facilities will still see use as e-commerce increases its role in the retail world. Supply Chain Digital noted that companies are developing new approaches to warehouse usage to speed up and stay competitive.

For instance, Amazon is operating standard general-use warehouses alongside high-priority hubs in urban areas and centers that sort small packages for efficient distribution. Keeping these three classes of facility in sync is doubtless a challenge.

Automation Becomes Essential
Increasing the amount and variety of automated tasks within a warehouse environment is a sensible practice, as this allows employees to turn their efforts to more skill-intensive tasks and helps companies scale up while keeping staffing consistent. Logistics Management added that some processes have moved beyond manual or automated and become completely phased out - physical package information inserts are sometimes replaced by e-mail, for instance.

Barcode labeling is another part of this process. When used to their utmost extent, barcode labels are a vital component of an automation-heavy warehouse. Scanning these codes allows shipping to be carried out with minimal hands-on involvement from employees.

Condensing a huge amount of data into a machine-readable form is the designated role of a barcode label, and when companies upgrade to standardized labeling systems, multiple supply chain partners can get consistent info from one label. High-speed, automated modern facilities can make great use of this quick data.

For more on the importance of labeling check out our recent report on the "Changing Landscape of Barcode Labeling."

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Topics:Supply ChainLabelingTransportation & LogisticsLogistics