You don’t need us to remind you of the importance of having a well-organized warehouse – but actually getting your warehouse organized is a different matter altogether.

As soon as it feels like you’ve gotten your warehouse under control, you can suddenly find a million more things that need to be attended to, and it can start to be a little overwhelming after too long. In the rush to always make sure your warehouse is well organized, you can start to encounter a few mistakes and errors that make the whole process that much harder for everyone.

If you want to get out ahead of these mistakes, or if you worry you might’ve made them already and you want to figure out what you can do to get your warehouse back into shape, here’s five of the most common organizational mistakes we’ve seen in warehouses:

 

Excess Inventory: Many warehouses struggle with finding the perfect balance of inventory levels. Sure, keeping around extra products is a good idea in some cases, but eventually you’ll find yourself running out of space on your warehouse shelves that could be better used for more active products. Take a look at your inventory levels and look for products that have sold slowly, items from last season that aren’t moving as well, or backup stock of products you didn’t need to have backups of after all, and make room for goods you’ll actually sell out of.

 

Poor Layout: Warehouse layout and traffic management can be a major factor in how successfully your staff can find the items they need, as well as how long orders can take to fulfill. If you’re noticing a lot of traffic snarls due to warehouse conveyor placement, or if your aisles are starting to be too narrow for your new forklifts and transportation to get through, you may need to take some time to rearrange your layout.

 

Lack of Labeling: Even if you know where your products are supposed to go, a lack of proper barcode usage and labeling can lead to lost items and lengthy picking times. Review your shelves and pallet racks to make sure everything is labelled and tagged correctly, otherwise you could find yourself with incomplete inventory counts or missing items when you need them.

 

Poor Housekeeping: Similarly, a lack of planning and housekeeping can lead to missing products, slow picks, and inaccurate orders. Don’t let your warehouse get too cluttered – schedule regular clean-ups to straighten out your shelves and prevent improperly stored inventory from getting in the way of the items you need most.

 

Lack of Forecasting: Even if everything’s been tidied up and put away correctly, you don’t want to start resting on your laurels. Make a plan for the next sixth-months-to-a-year to make sure you know what products you’re expecting and what you could do better in the future to prevent the need for major reorganizations. Staying on top of your organizational needs will make sure you don’t need to do as much to get organized down the road, and can help your warehouse stay more efficient overall.

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