13 Ways to Be More Efficient in Your Fulfillment Operation

As Amazon gets stronger and companies become more competitive, e-commerce companies need to continually find ways to improve operations, reduce expenses, and at the same time improve customer service. At the heart of this is continuous process improvement.

As we perform operational assessments for multichannel retailers - while companies have similar functions and processes - they often end up with very different outcomes and costs per order. From the hundreds of practical blogs on our website, here are 13 major ways to make your fulfillment operation more efficient and links to detailed blogs for improvement.

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11 Ways To Get More From WMS Vendor Demonstrations

 Vendor demos are at the heart of selecting the right WMS system for your business. Having been part of hundreds of demos over 33 years, we find that preparation in advance makes all the difference in selecting the right WMS for your business. Detailed preparation upfront will save your users and the vendors time too.

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6 Considerations For Integrating Millennials In Your e-Commerce Fulfillment Workforce

Each generation sees the world differently. We hear clients’ managers and human resource leaders often grumbling and ranting about the difficulty of hiring and managing Millennials. Without a doubt, this generation thinks differently about life and work, and businesses may not have found the best ways to integrate them into the company culture.

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Assessing What California Prop 65 Means to Your Online and Catalog Content

The following blog should not be construed in any way as legal opinion. F. Curtis Barry & Company is simply addressing what product merchants should address immediately as major amendments to California’s Prop 65 go into effect August 30, 2018. Each company should seek immediate, qualified legal assistance to evaluate and implement this regulation with regard to your online website and catalog content. Other selling channels use master catalogs, email promotions and product brochures that could be affected. They should be discussed with your legal counselor as well.

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12 Ways To Get Your Warehouse Returns Area Ready For Peak Season

Your planning for this year’s peak season is well underway. One area that often gets less attention is the returns processing area. Returns are a necessary evil in an e-commerce business and if returns handling is not efficient, it will hurt profitability and customer service.

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Selecting The Best Picking Method For Your E-commerce Business

Order picking is one of the most important functions in the warehouse. The customer experience can be a good or bad one based on the results of the picking process. Order accuracy and timely order fulfillment are keys to a successful customer experience. Picking and packing are the two areas where generally the most significant cost savings can be developed.

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11 Ways to Improve Dock to Stock Processes in Your E-Commerce Warehouse

Every fulfillment business, regardless of size, faces the same daily pressure to meet service levels making ‘Dock to Stock’ the battle cry of every receiving department. Dock to Stock involves efficient internal processes as well as setting vendor compliance policies between a vendor and the merchant operation. These combined practices allow warehouse receiving to move incoming receipts and new product into inventory quickly.

The most important element of Dock to Stock is validation that the vendor has shipped the correct items and the correct quantities from the purchase order. If the vendor’s shipment deviates from the purchase order, inventory counts can be inaccurate and customer service could get delayed. If you can avoid those costly issues, Dock to Stock can help streamline receiving and get items where they need to be faster.

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9 Benefits to Installing WMS as a Software as a Service

Software as a Service (SaaS) and Cloud based computing has made Warehouse Management Systems (WMS) affordable for many small to medium sized companies. There are nine benefits to installing SaaS versus on-premise based applications.

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Identifying the Right Labor Market For Your E-Commerce Distribution Center

The planning and execution of an ecommerce fulfillment center relocation is a massive undertaking. The budgeting of one-time costs, startup costs and ongoing expenses alone involves a rigorous process (read more about budgeting for a warehouse move here).

Identifying the right labor market for a new DC is highly dependent on performing a three pronged analysis. The analysis must:

  1. Identify the best Metropolitan Statistical Areas (MSAs) that can deliver the time to customer and inbound and outbound freight savings and goals desired;
  2. Locate facilities that meet your building’s current and future requirements;
  3. Have the quality and availability of workforce at an hourly wage rate and benefits structure which are competitive but affordable.

More: Read “Developing a Warehouse Move Plan”

This blog outlines the data and process for identifying the right labor market.

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8 Benefits to Having Accurate Weights and Dimensions in Your Warehouse Systems

Most companies have heard about the high-level benefits of having accurate weights and measures (cubic dimensions) for each SKU in their warehouse management systems, but many operations still aren’t utilizing them. Without this information, companies will struggle to provide the basic data to do slotting, better capacity planning, and if necessary full truck or LTL planning. As a result, they may be paying more in accessorial charges and other freight charges – this includes the small parcel side as well.

By dimensioning SKU inventory, we mean the accurate cubic and weight measurements via technology rather than manual measurements or estimates. Dimensioning is an important building block to managing your operations.

Related: Learn more about how an independent warehouse assessment can cut your costs by  10-20%

In order to dimension SKU inventory, companies acquire a cubing and weighing system (also called dimensioning systems). These systems are available in a variety of models such as a mobile units on a cart, or a large bed scanner in line with conveyors.

The basic systems scan the product to determine dimensions; weighs the item; records and sends to your warehousing or enterprise shipping system. Updating the product master file can either be batch or online, real time.

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