Putaway is one of the most important and vital topics in the field of warehousing. Due to the importance of resource management and finding optimal algorithms in various fields and using the experiences of great people in this field, more mature processes can be designed.
In a warehouse, putaway refers to the all processes that happen from receiving goods from vendor till putting into the storage locations, which it might be different by business needs. In this regard, having a mature WMS with good putaway algorithm could simplifies the process of storing items, reduces the risk of misplacing, losing, and even possible thefts of goods and also it leads to have clean and organized warehouse.
Putaway is a topic that is always overshadowed by other processes such as picking, packing, and shipping because at first glance, these processes will generate revenue or cause customer satisfaction. While, putaway will have a significant and direct impact on the named processes.
Clean warehouse with good structure and classified storage locations with specific logics will leads to speed of the picking and packing process and in the end, it can bring customer satisfaction.
With good putaway algorithm picking process and traveled distance by pickers will be reduced and will increase the volume of processed orders with the same resources.
Artificial intelligence is a topic that companies are using today to surpass their competitors. Calculations that were previously done by humans with considering human errors today replaced by complex machine algorithms by using the historical data. The putaway process is no exception to this rule, and it can be one of the platforms for exploiting artificial intelligence. The important thing to note is that, it is like a double-edged sword, be a grounds for progress and, if not properly investigated, can lead to failure. I will discuss this in more detail in future articles.
Here’s why putaway is important for your business:
You are making it easier to putaway the next batch of items, since you know where to place them
The risk of losing items and confusion to find certain items in the warehouse is reduced
Creating a platform for controlling and monitoring inventory and helping to decide on the re-supply of goods
This is especially helpful in cases where a particular product meets reorder point and needs it to be replenished fast before a customer places an order for it.
Optimal use of storage locations of warehouse
Accelerate the picking process according to the order in the putaway structure
Accelerate the inbound process of goods and making optimal use of manpower
"Warehouse managers suggest that inventory control (53%), picking (47%), putaway & replenishment (45%) are the most inefficient warehouse processes."
"Travel distance in a warehouse is 60% to 70% of labor cost."
Talking about putaway processes requires hours of discussion and review in various fields of work, and it is certainly impossible to address it in one article. I hope the prepared article has helped to better understand this important process. In future articles, I will try to talk more about technical aspects of warehousing.