SAS 70

Sep 3 2019   1:21AM GMT

How to Improve Order Fulfillment

Keith Harrell Profile: SAS70ExPERT

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As a business owner, you want to achieve as much success as possible. To do that, making sure your customers are satisfied is essential. If your business ships goods, making sure that the right products are shipped – and that those goods arrive in a timely fashion – are paramount to your success. 

Consider Amazon, for example; there’s a reason why the company is the largest online marketplace in the world. They offer free 2-day shipping for their Prime customers (and currently, there are more than 100 million Prime members in the US alone), in 2017, they delivered more than 5 billion items to those members. Why do so many people rely on the mega eCommerce site? – Because they are masters of order fulfillment. 

Of course, you may not be able to reach Amazon status, but you can certainly bump up your success by improving your order fulfillment process. Here are some tips that will help you do just that. 

Improve Slotting 

In order fulfillment, slotting refers to the process of where goods should be located in the picking location so that the most commonly ordered items are situated both near each other and near the beginning of the picking process. By improving slotting, you can substantially improve the picking process – and the entire order fulfillment process – as pickers will be able to easily access the most popular items, thus, your overall fulfillment process will improve. 

Implement Scanning Devices

An important component of the order fulfillment process is being able to identify the precise location of every product in your warehouse. If you don’t know where items are located, when orders come in, you’ll be left looking for a needle in a haystack. Use scanning devices to determine exactly where your products are located. Barcode and wireless scanners can save a tremendous amount of time, mitigate errors, and save a great deal of money; all things that can dramatically improve fulfillment. 

Enhance Warehouse Communication

If you want to improve delivery, effective communication with your warehouse is vital. With proper communication, an order can be processed at your warehouse within a matter of seconds. To improve communication, instead of relying on email alone, physically speak to your warehouse managers. Doing so will allow you and your warehouse to stay current with the goings on of your operation. For example, you’ll be able to receive notification regarding the importation of more stock as soon as it’s needed, and you can arrange to up your warehouse staff when there’s an increase in orders and cut back on staff (and costs) during lulls.  

Consider Outsourcing 

Instead of self-fulfillment, consider outsourcing the process to an order fulfillment service provider. Doing so offers a myriad of benefits. You’ll see a reduction in your operating costs, be able to take advantage of lower shipping rates, and improve your reach so that you can expand your operation. Plus, outsourcing your order fulfillment will allow you to concentrate on other important elements of our business so you can continue growing. 

Team Up with the Right Courier

Using the right courier for your needs is essential. If you aren’t using the right shipping service, the final phase of order fulfillment – package delivery – can falter. Working with a courier located within close proximity to your warehouse and one that can guarantee fast delivery. When you work with the right shipping service, order fulfillment will dramatically improve. 

Communicate with Customers

Customers want to know when they’re going to receive their packages. Make sure that you communicate information regarding the status of your customers’ orders. Tracking technologies will allow customers to keep tabs on their packages so that they know exactly where they are and when they can expect them. 

Improving order fulfillment will improve customer satisfaction, and when your customers are satisfied, your success improves.  

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