Strategies for maximising resources and warehouse efficiency

Between October and November 2010, Aberdeen Group, a Harte-Hanks Company, surveyed 158 companies documenting their processes and capabilities regarding warehouse management excellence. The Aberdeen Group report, Warehouse Management Excellence: Maximising Resources and Efficiency, reveals that optimal use of the resources of space, people and technology are a main topic of interest on the minds of today's supply chain managers, pushing them to improve their warehouse operations by increasing flexibility, realigning assets, and improving labour efficiency. Top companies are increasing utilisation of their resources and are leveraging both WMS and Labour Management System (LMS) software as well as automation solutions to improve the efficiency of their operations.

"In today's environment a predominant pressure companies are experiencing is a need to reduce warehouse operating expenses while maximising utilisation of resources. In order to achieve this goal, companies are looking both to increase efficiency of software and automation across the entire distribution network and to improve alliances with outside parties to allow for better planning of physical space/locations and labour," explained Bob Heaney, Senior Research Analyst of Supply Chain Management at Aberdeen.

Additionally, the research reveals that customer demands for high turn time performance and the increased customer demand for accurate delivery status and cost information is driving the need to ensure shipment integrity and enhance internal/external communications across the entire supply chain.

"The key takeaway is that there is an optimal level of visibility, communication, and optimisation that is required to balance all these competing pressures. Today's leaders, more than ever, have mandates to reduce distribution costs while improving the frequency of delivery without diminishing the accuracy of shipments and customer service," explained Heaney.

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