In today’s fast-paced world, speedy fulfillment has become the mantra for every business across industries. With rising competition and increasing customer expectations, retailers, suppliers and distributors are always looking out for effective warehousing solutions.
What is a Warehouse?
A warehouse is a facility for storing goods. Irrespective of the industry they cater to, all warehouses follow the principle of incoming-storage-outgoing, which means, products come in, are stored, and go out again.
Warehousing operations require a specific strategy. There can be several warehousing solutions available such as FIFO, FEFO, LIFO, etc. but always choose the one that suits your business operations. Irrespective of the type of solution, selecting the right racking system for warehousing needs is an essential factor to consider. There are several storage rack manufacturers across Bangalore. Chart out your storage requirements and get the right kind of racks from well-known racks manufacturer and suppliers such as Donracks, who support warehouses in 9 major cities across India.
Let us now look at some of the warehousing solutions and how they help with warehouse operations.
Donracks delivers quality stainless steel storage racks for all your industrial and commerical needs across India. We have warehouses at Bangalore, Coimbatore, Chennai, Trichy, Hyderabad, Delhi, Vijayawada, Cochin to meet the industrial and retail storage needs.
Warehousing Solutions – Explained
FIFO – First In First Out
This is the most common storage solution adopted in many warehouses. FIFO stands for First In First Out. The oldest inventory is shipped out first, and the newest inventory remains stored until the older ones move out. FIFO strategy is used for products that have an expiration date/shelf life. Items like batteries, beauty products, etc. all need to move quickly.
FIFO process will help improve the overall warehouse operations. Hence regardless of shelf life on products, FIFO could be implemented by carefully ageing the inventory by one of the below methods.
- Expiration Dates – Where products come with defined expiration dates, use this to sort the inventory. The dates enable easy identification of older products.
- Sequencing Pallets – FIFO can be easily implemented for non-dated inventory by attaching sequential license plates to storage pallets as they come inside the system. With this method, older pallets will get a lower sequence id and hence will move out first.
- Lot Control – Similar to license plates, all pallets received on a day can be grouped with a lot tag. The lot tags can be pre-printed with barcodes and used on all products (not necessarily palleted) received on a particular day. The groups can be aged using the date received.
As already mentioned, implementing any warehouse system requires careful strategy. Implementing FIFO requires several considerations as well.
- FIFO requires effective racking systems to make older items easily accessible. Choosing the right rack manufacturer and supplier solves half the problem.
- Stacking pallets appropriately is essential for a successful FIFO solution. Care should be taken to not stack newer pallets on top of older ones. This mode of stacking will require significant effort to move the older pallets first.
- It is important to label the products and pallets clearly so that operators can identify the older inventory easily.
FIFO has several benefits, the foremost being, it helps avoid obsolescence of your inventory by shipping the oldest items first.
Let us now have a look at the other warehousing solutions.
FEFO – First Expiration First Out
This is similar to FIFO. In this system, the product that expires first is shipped out first. FEFO strategy is often considered for products that expire quickly. Most food-grade warehouses use this strategy to maintain the freshness of the inventory. Pharmaceuticals and food industries take advantage of the FEFO strategy.
LIFO – Last In First Out
In this strategy, the products that come into the warehouse recently are shipped out first. This is used for products that do not expire. LIFO allows the operators to align recent costs to recent revenue. If the prices of products are on the rise, it does not make sense now to sell old products, which were made at a lesser price, and will alter profit margins. This strategy is used for products like bricks, sand, etc. that have no expiration and whose prices fluctuate often.
Storage Systems for Better Warehousing
Regardless of the warehousing strategy followed, it is always important to choose the right kind of storage system to make effective use of the space. This has been the focus of many storage rack manufacturers in Bangalore.