We are on the potential brink of global Supply Chains disruption. Many of the major brick and mortar retailers in America are now temporarily closed until at least mid-to-end of April. Online merchants are still open, although Amazon is limiting shipments to priority medical and health products.Read More >
These are truly unprecedented times. Strikes at ports and fuel prices sometimes disrupt supply chains; however, supply chains have not experienced such impact and fast disruption to off-shore manufacturing and shipping patterns as they are with COVID-19 since WWII.Read More >
Considering all of the challenges today’s ecommerce fulfillment centers face, it’s difficult to know what aspect to tackle first when assessing your operation. While it’s OK to have just some general objectives - like reduce fulfillment costs – many companies’ assessments have more specific objectives such as addressing increased fulfillment expenses without incremental increases in productivity.Read More >
Even with technology advancements and headlines alluding to robot-operated warehouses, most fulfillment centers and warehouses rely on manual labor. In fact, only the largest companies employ and justify advanced automation. Despite the cost prohibitiveness of automation for many companies, manual labor is not cheap, either.Read More >
Opening a new fulfillment facility – whether it’s an existing building or build-to-suit (BTS) project - is an expensive and long-term commitment. Oftentimes, facilities do not open on time or within budget because of inadequate planning and conditions that arise. Issues such as construction delays and systems/automation testing lengthen the start-up timeframe and increase costs.Read More >
Many ecommerce and retail businesses achieve 60% to 70% of their profits in the last quarter of the year. Peak weeks order processing may be 10 to 15 times higher than an average week. For multichannel businesses and wholesalers, their peaks start months earlier to supply other businesses. Take the time after each peak to analyze your fulfillment’s successes and failures and develop a plan to make improvements using a multi-faceted approach.Read More >
Has a personal shopping experience ever made you reflect on how important fulfillment is to customer service? Fulfillment is often the last touch point your business has with a product before landing in the hands of your customer. The amount of attention to detail your fulfillment staff put into selecting and packaging the product has a direct impact on whether or not the customer will be happy.Read More >
There are many types of warehouse operational metrics you can use to measure the order throughput, inventory accuracy, cost of departmental operations and customer service.
For 34 years, F. Curtis Barry & Company has assisted clients in defining key metrics, how to measure the operational performance and implement best practices.
Continual process improvement is a principle many companies subscribe to, but they don’t have reliable data to measure productivity of current processes. Process improvement should begin with this principle: “If you have not measured it, you cannot improve it.”
Many managers look only at the negatives when talking about warehouse productivity. But, most people want to be in alignment with your productivity goals and to contribute in meaningful ways to the success of your business.
As I conduct an operational assessment with companies focusing on benchmarking and productivity, I find many companies do not openly share their warehouse KPIs and results with employees. Many don’t even have a formal, weekly process for capturing and reporting the KPIs. Those that do a good job of the weekly reporting often don’t have department and individual employee productivity goals and don’t publicly publish the results. You can’t improve something you haven’t measured.