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How Inventory Systems Boost Packaging Fulfillment Services

Posted: November 07, 2019 by Ly Phan

How Inventory Systems Boost Packaging Fulfillment Services

Placed at the tip of the supply chain, distribution centers play a critical role in ensuring inventory reach their final destinations. After being processed through multiple stages, often across international borders, the packaging and delivery is the last step before it ends up in the hands of customers. It’s vital to get the packaging fulfillment services right; otherwise, all the hard work that had gone on before is wasted.

Much of a distribution center’s success lies in its ability to track and manage all inventory from the moment it enters the warehouse to the moment it leaves. With profit margins becoming increasingly tight, lost inventory can cost as much as 25 times the actual value of the item.

The challenge for distribution centers is to ensure the items reach their destinations undamaged and with maximum efficiency. The secret is in setting up your inventory system towards facilitating the optimal movement of goods and supporting the order fulfillment process. In doing so, your business would be able to reduce the potential for human error and to increase inventory accuracy.

For any business, the advantages of organized processes and systems are clear. They help bring about automation, accountability, and transparency, which all combine to ensure fully optimized operation. One of the best ways to implement an efficient system is to invest in SaaS-based inventory management software.

There are several benefits to using a cloud-based inventory system:

  1. Seamless integration: Once set up and the software has all the information needed, the inventory management software can integrate with other systems. For instance, once a worker puts in information about a specific product, it will automatically update external programs such as Quickbooks or ERP. Compared to paper-based systems, this level of data syncing is far more efficient and allows for a quicker movement of goods.
  2. Automated processes: This integration leads to another benefit, which is more automated processes. The software enables workers to utilize barcode technology to speed up and increase the accuracy of workflows. The resulting efficiency can bring tangible rewards, with one client reporting savings of up to $15,000 a month after implementing Smartturn’s solution.
  3. Real-time visibility: The advantage of real-time visibility can not be overstated. From mobile devices, workers can get critical details on inventory instantaneously, in the palm of their hands. For example, with scanning technology, the user can zap the barcode and obtain all the information on their selected products - including stock levels, destinations, and source details.
  4. Track inventory: Being able to retain real-time visibility, together with remote access, enables companies to track inventory throughout the warehouse and the supply chain. This can prove particularly useful for businesses that operate across multiple locations. 
  5. Return-on-investment (ROI): For any business, any outlay needs to be justified in terms of ROI. At Smartturn, we not only provide an affordable solution where packages start at just $500 a month, but it also generates revenue for your business. Frozen Gourmet, a grocery distributor that turned to SmartTurn, reported seeing double-digit growth within weeks of implementing the software.

In essence, inventory management software can help warehouses and distribution centers become a hub of slick and efficient operations. The ability to integrate different processes will lead to greater automation and real-time visibility, which enables teams to generate maximum ROI.

 

How Software Boosts Inventory Fulfillment Services

product handling warehouse

There’s little doubt that cloud-based software can prove to be an invaluable asset to inventory management systems. In terms of order fulfillment accuracy, speed and ensuring the product reaches its destination in top condition are the three top priorities - and SmartTurn’s solution can help on each count. 

 

Speed

As mentioned previously, automation is a crucial benefit of inventory management software, and it can directly improve order fulfillment. By taking out the need for excessive human input within paper-based systems, significant time can be saved when processing orders. 

This is due to the software’s ability to automatically process orders against real-time inventory information. In addition, it can generate pick lists, bin locations, and customer shipping details within the same platform, further eliminating time-consuming human input. The integration capabilities also come to the fore, with billing information being automatically updated.

Speed can also be seen on the warehouse floor, where workers using small business inventory scanner systems using remote devices can instantly access the information they need. Working in teams or as individuals, they can quickly put together the items and fulfill the orders without needing to go to a central console.

Each of these measures adds up to shave minutes off every single time an order is fulfilled, which can quickly add up to hours and days. According to some studies, automated order fulfillment systems can speed up processing times by up to 90%. In today’s hyper-competitive world, this could prove to be the difference between a successful and failing business.

 

Accuracy

That being said, speed is worthless if the orders are not adequately fulfilled or end up in the wrong place. Accuracy is the other vital component of success, and inventory management software can provide the solution. 

The integration capabilities of SmartTurn’s cloud-based solution is evident yet again, with information being updated across different platforms, including accounting and ERP systems. As a result, the pickers and packers can be confident the information they have to hand is up to date and accurate - without having to double-check.

 

Condition of Inventory

The automated nature of a SaaS-based inventory management system reduces the need for workers to touch and move stock. Taking advantage of technology, such as barcode scanners, teams will quickly be able to locate and identify products without having to handle them - which reduces the risk of damage. There’s also the added bonus of increasing productivity by reducing the time committed to handling stock.

 

Use Technology to Boost Packaging Fulfillment

As well as having a system in place, it’s essential to utilize technology to gain a competitive advantage. By taking a step back, and viewing order fulfillment as the end of a streamlined inventory management process, you can make significant strides in improving accuracy and efficiency.

The critical work takes place at the moment the inventory comes under your control, at which point it needs to be entered into your system. From that point onwards, the information can be automatically updated across all the relevant systems by using the software. 

The key is to ensure your teams understand how the systems work, and how to fully utilize it through remote devices, barcode scanners, and by following a set of processes.

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