How to Streamline Order Processing
Order processing can be laborious, and while it’s essential for faultless communication between each stage of the process, that’s easier said than done. There is one key way order processing can be streamlined into a more efficient operation, and this involves clever pieces of software.
What is order processing?
Order processing is the method of getting a product out for delivery once it has been ordered. There are several stages involved in the process including picking, sorting and packing, and depending on the size of the business, this can be done by one person or a group of people.
How can software streamline order processing?
Order processing that is conducted manually using pen and paper is often open to mistakes being made by human error. A growing business will also likely grow in the complexity of its operations, and so the manual processing of orders will become a much slower task that will result in unhappy and unimpressed customers. This is where using warehouse management software for order processing can be hugely beneficial for businesses looking to become much more efficient in their operations.
Generally speaking, warehouse management software can store and share the data of items, including understanding stock levels of specific products, where those products are located in the warehouse, and knowing what stock has been ordered and where it’s going. Having all of this information in one place can help ensure orders are fulfilled efficiently and accurately. It also means any potential delays of incoming stock can be quickly communicated to customers for better customer service.
With a warehouse management system, barcodes can be used to follow items throughout their journey in the warehouse, helping pickers find specific products to fulfil orders that bit more efficiently. Scanning barcodes can also save time and increase accuracy as manually writing product codes is a much slower process, and can be open to error if a wrong number or letter is written, or if the handwriting isn’t easily understandable.
Another benefit of using a warehouse management system is that it can unify all warehouse related tasks into a single orchestrated platform, not just order processing. By having all processes integrated, with information being sent between them, communication can be significantly improved not only between staff, but also to customers.
The future of order processing
With technological advancements moving faster than ever before, warehousing businesses will need to keep up to speed in order to stay competitive and meet growing demand. The likelihood is that businesses still using manual order processing methods in 5/10 years-time will become obsolete, as more businesses move towards offering next day (or even same-day) deliveries thanks to Amazon. Whilst implementing a more efficient order processing method may be more expensive in the short-term (training and set-up costs), implementing a technological solution sooner rather than later means that money can be saved in the longer-term from reduced errors, higher warehouse capacity, and happy customers.