As has been highlighted above, the efficient acceptance of deliveries may directly affect the overall performance of the warehouse, measured as the daily number of executed orders and, at the same time, customer satisfaction. This is of particular significance when we decide to work with low stock on hand and just-in-time deliveries.
What should we do in order to prevent unaccepted deliveries from paralysing the warehouse?
In the case of deliveries, there are many things on which we, as the owners of the internet shop, cannot exert much influence. For example, we have little or no influence on whether:
How can we optimise the delivery acceptance process when there are so many uncertainties? This may be done by means of gradually eliminating the uncertainties and lowering their impact on the overall performance of the warehouse. The more and the sooner the warehousemen know, the better they may prepare themselves to avoid wasting any moment when a given delivery finally reaches the warehouse!
For this purpose, we, as people who manage a internet shop, should make all efforts in order to:
- cooperate with honest and reliable suppliers. As a result, if they inform us about the delivery dates, then there is a good chance that the delivery will reach the customer on time and not two days later;
- inform the warehouse about expected deliveries as soon as we receive confirmation from the supplier. Such a notification should contain the following information: source of the delivery (supplier’s name), manner in which it will be delivered (driver or courier (the courier company’s name etc.)), names of the products and the quantities in which they should be delivered.
If the warehousemen know in advance what they should expect (usually, we possess all the necessary information right after placing a given order, and often at least a day earlier than the expected delivery date), they are able to plan:
- at what hour they should expect a given delivery (warehousemen usually know when different couriers visit the warehouse),
- quantity and types of products to be delivered (thus, they know how many people will be necessary in order to accept a given delivery quickly),
- whether a location in the warehouse should be prepared to store the accepted goods (meaning they do not waste time doing this after accepting the delivery, with the goods already on their hands).
This means that a day before the delivery, the warehouse is already prepared to accept it and all the plans and activities which need to be performed are already considered, designed and perhaps even tested.
Conclusion about the internet shop and its deliveries
All of this contributes to the fact that, when the delivery reaches the warehouse, no one has to waste time on thinking about the source of the goods, the reasons why they have been delivered (as stock, or perhaps the goods which are supposed to leave the warehouse on the same day), who is supposed to accept them, where they should be stored etc. Everyone in the warehouse knows what they should do and everything takes place automatically, without any delays.
Therefore, reliable information on each delivery transmitted to the warehouse with a suitable advance (the bigger the delivery, the sooner the information should be transmitted to the warehouse) guarantees that at least half of the problems arising from uncertainties has been eliminated or minimised before the delivery reaches the warehouse. The warehouse operations related to accepting the goods constitute the second half. Much depends also on which system integrations you chose for your online store. Some are better and faster than others. So it is very important to choose right one.
In the next article we will discuss which activities form part of this operation and how we can successfully perform them in a short time so that the accepted goods are ready to be delivered to the customers as soon as possible.