Economic slowdowns can put a tremendous strain on your business’s people, processes and supply chains. However, operations can mitigate some of these factors by investing in the right tools to help collect data and instill a culture of continuous improvement. Managers should consider implementing the following steps to prepare for the future:
Visualize Improvements with Lean Management
Lean management methods are based on the philosophies of achieving the complete elimination of all waste in pursuit of the most efficient methods. This process begins with visualization. Visualization aims to make a situation easily understood merely by looking at it and can be accomplished throughout a facility with data displays, label and location markings and tool displays. Through a proven process of gathering data via visualization, organization and standardization, lean management can help operations gain visibility into the current state of an operation.
Invest in Telematics
Investing in telematics can save warehouses from potential losses in productivity and damage. The data these systems gather set a baseline to aid in identifying issues that are affecting a warehouse’s bottom line. Tracking things like fleet utilization, operator performance and scheduled maintenance allows operations to optimize by proactively identifying areas of loss and inefficiency and gaining visibility into which equipment is being utilized the best and which cost the most to operate.
Utilize a Labor Management System
As labor markets tighten and operations become leaner, understanding your cost and productivity of labor is crucial. Implementing a Labor Management System (LMS) can give operations visibility into their labor force, identifying and reclaiming lost or missing time, which can result in big savings.
It’s not enough to just collect data — operations also need to analyze it. By analyzing the available telematics data, managers can make informed decisions about where improvements are needed. Managers should regularly evaluate the data collected from telematics systems and adjust warehouse operations accordingly.
To learn more about what The Raymond Corporation is doing to ensure warehouse, distribution and supply chain operations stay efficient and productive, visit www.raymondcorp.com.