Businesses are seeing the value in customer proximity more every day. Being closer to the customer cuts down on your costs and allows to deliver faster shipping and better service. Consumer demand and the growing demands of e-commerce have made warehousing spaces even more essential to supply chain management.
A contract warehouse supplied by a 3PL solution provider is one of the most popular strategies to remedy this challenge. When you are working with a third-party provider, it is important that you understand your warehousing options and how much space you need. There are some crucial questions to ask yourself and your provider.
- Your Products: A vital to ask yourself is how are your products going to change in the future? Your business needs to plan for what products will be coming in the future and at what rate. Will your old products become obsolete? Will your new stock fit in the cubic dimensions of the current stock? What are your future sales plans? Your sales could dictate an increase in more units per order and would affect space requirements. The answers to these questions are crucial to things like warehouse management and order fulfillment.
- Your Inventory: In today’s world of high demand, companies will often run into excess inventory. Excess inventory is when you are maintaining more stock than it takes to meet minimum order quantities. Are you maintaining a 6 or 7-month supply when a 6 or 7-week supply is all you need? How much space will it open up if you get rid of that excess inventory?Inventory turnover can have a huge effect on the amount of space you need. Liquidating excess or slow-moving items can provide a significant bump in efficiency throughout your supply chain. It can be a challenge to work out just how much inventory you need, but it is a critical part of getting the most out of the space you are using.
- Space: Make sure that your 3PL provider is making the most of the space they are providing to you. Are they taking advantage of the vertical space? Are their warehouse and distribution services using the most efficient methods to deliver your products? Item popularity and pick rate should go into item storage and transportation management.
- The Right Partner: The most significant question to ask yourself is which 3PL provider you are going to work with. Proper logistics services will be able to help you resolve many of the above issues. They will have the distribution center solutions and logistics management techniques to improve the efficiency of the warehousing you are using. Finding the right logistics partner will be a game-changer for your company.
Estimating your demand for warehouse space is going to be a critical part of planning for the future of your company. Make sure that you are working with a logistics partner that understands your needs and the challenges of your industry. An expert in the efficiency of warehousing space can make a significant difference for the outlook of your business. Contact FW Logistics today for more information.