What is warehouse management? How can your company benefit from warehouse management? What is the difference between inventory management and warehouse management?
Warehouse management is increasingly important for companies to fulfill the promises they make to their customers and to be able to save more time and allocate money to other areas of the company. Let’s start from the essentials:
What is warehouse management?
It is the logistics process that is responsible for receiving, accumulating, moving and maintaining any type of material, such as:
- Raw material
- Semi-finished products
- Processed products
- Safeguard machines and equipment
In addition, warehouse management is also responsible for planning the storage of these products in a location, planning the movement, the supply and keeping the exact control of the stocks that are so important to produce more and sell more.
Is there a difference between warehouse management and inventory management?
Actually, both are based on the same idea with the difference of complexity, that is, the size of your company:
If you have a small business, inventory management tells you how many units of the product you have a place. If, on the other hand, you have a slightly larger company or you are a manufacturer, you will have to deal with more complex tasks such as knowing how many products are finished and how many are in half, knowing how many are defective, doing maintenance work on the site where it is stored and all the tasks related to it. Inventory management is also known as stock management or stock management.
As the company grows, the need for multiple locations grows as well and the inventory management tasks for each of the locations becomes more and more complex. That’s where warehouse management comes into place.
The general tasks of warehouse management are:
- Input and materials, supplies and products
- Supply to production
- The exact location of the product in the warehouse
- State of the product or material (finished, almost finished, etc.)
- Product characteristics (Size M, green color, version 40 GB, for example)
- Identification and labeling of the product
- Product photos
- Movement of operators
- Machines commissioned (forklifts, cranes, etc.)
- Connected with the sales department to update availability
- Distribution of products inside and outside the warehouse
- Quality management
- Warehouse maintenance plan
- Security plan
- Control of expiration dates
The task of warehouse management ends when the item leaves the warehouse (even if they take data like who, when and where they took it).
What does the management of a warehouse do for your company?
In a simple way:
- Prevent you from spending a lot of time looking for a product and making faster deliveries
- You control all the movements of the product in your warehouse to avoid damage, theft or expiration of your stocks
- Control of production so as not to saturate the warehouse
- Send updated information to sellers, e-commerce store, ordering system to suppliers, production, etc.
- Avoid mistakes when identifying products
- Avoid hiring staff for these types of tasks
- You reduce time and money that you can use for other value-added activities.
The problem with warehouse management is that it represents a cost that does not add final value to the product. So optimized management is vital so you can have more competitive prices in the market. To achieve this task, I recommend you use ERPAG, an inventory, manufacturing and warehouse management software, that enables you to have multiple locations and manage your stock in each one of those locations!
To read more about what falls under the warehouse management side of Erpag, refer to the following links: