• Overview

  • What is Putaway in Warehouse Management?

  • Types of Putaway in Warehouse Management

  • Putaway Best Practices

What is Putaway in Warehouse Management? 

The putaway process is one of the fundamental warehouse processes. It is the transfer of goods to an optimal storage location. Problems occur when products are not stored properly. So, finding the ideal storage place provides many benefits. Firstly, cargo gets stored faster and more efficiently. Then, the travel time of employees also decreases.

Moreover, the right storage provides security for the goods. Proper storage also helps with maximising floor space. Finally, the goods are easier to track, find and retrieve. 

Types of Putaway in Warehouse Management

Directed Put-Away 

Some WMS software feature directed putaway. This program works by optimising putaway locations. As a result, goods get directed to the most favourable storage positions. The program analyses data such as sales, size, price and weight to determine the prime location. For example, it stores items that are usually ordered together. This speeds up the picking process later on. If the first option does not work, the system will find the next best option. 

Fixed-Location Putaway

This is one of the types of putaway in warehouse that doesn’t require any program. This approach works when a warehouse manager assigns a specific location for specific items. However, this doesn’t necessarily mean storing particular products together. Depending on the data, products with similar characteristics can also be kept together. For example, some choose to put delicate items together. On the other hand, someone else might group temperature sensitive items in one place. Therefore, it focuses on tailoring storage spaces for specific products. 

Dynamic Putaway

The dynamic approach focuses on putting together the incoming items. Instead of assigning specific locations for the items, decisions are made on the spot. Dynamic putaway focuses more on current demand. So, storage locations can change during different times. However, with the continuous shift in locations, it’s best to use technology. For example, inventory management software is beneficial for this scenario. 

Putaway Best Practices

With the different types of putaway in warehouse management, it’s also essential to standardise best practices. Creating a list will be easier to keep track of what contributes to the success of a business. 

Collect the Correct Data and Analytics 

To ensure that the putaway process flows smoothly, you should start by collecting the appropriate data to find the most optimal places. Think about your goals so that you can align them with the storage location for the items. If you’re using directed putaway, you’ll have the help of the warehouse management system to help you. The software will be able to take note of important factors such as: 

  • Cargo size
  • Weight
  • Height
  • Shipping frequency
  • Cargo type
  • Sales volume
  • Available storage 

These are all vital to finding the proper storage location for your products. If you don’t have a warehouse management system, then you might have to do this yourself. 

Create and Follow a Timeline 

No matter which of the types of putaway in warehouse you follow, one thing should be constant: the speed that you accomplish the task. Putaway should be quick and efficient to clear space for other incoming items. Additionally, this helps fulfil orders a lot faster as the flow of products continues seamlessly. To make sure you are on schedule, creating a timeline will help you coordinate everything. A slow process could mean delayed orders and loss of customers. 

Upgrade your WMS 

A warehouse management system without the proper features could be detrimental to your operations. To make sure your putaway process is seamless and efficient, make sure to stay on top of the trends and keep your system updated. A great way to optimise your WMS is to invest in a modern one that can handle communication with your ERP software to fast-track receiving capabilities. This will not only speed up the putaway process but could also improve your throughput. 

Minimise Errors 

Any mistakes made with order fulfilment could cause you time and money. Having an efficient putaway process will minimise the chances of errors. If done correctly, a proper putaway process can lead to a quick and effective order fulfilment process. Not only can you get orders done on time, but you’ll also have satisfied customers thanks to your fast operations. 

Reduce Travel Time 

Using maps and signs can really help you reduce the travel time of employees. If possible, you should also go over the route with your employees to make sure they follow the same process as everyone whenever there are new items in the warehouse. This is truly a critical step in optimising your putaway process in the warehouse. 

While there are different types of putaway in warehouse and a handful of best practices in the putaway process, direct putaway is still a great practice when your goal is to improve speed and efficiency. To do this, you’ll need the help of an equally efficient warehouse management system. It’s best to choose a WMS that can assign the final location through Advance Shipment Notice. Then, take time to reflect on the practices which could improve your warehouse. For any questions about investing in current WMS technology, you can contact Qbasis today! Qbasis specialises in providing top of the line B2B solutions to different companies and warehouses. For more information, you can also check out the official website of Qbasis.