While the process of pick and pack within the fulfillment cycle is not a new one, the methodology has changed somewhat over the years. Instead of simply choosing products from the latest shipment and repackaging them for shipment to a customer, many companies now choose to record the incoming inventory before they begin the pick and pack process.
While this may see unnecessary when the merchandise is coming in on one truck and leaving on another, recording it as incoming merchandise will help at a later date if the customer to whom you are shipping files a complaint the merchandise was not received. Unless you record it as incoming and outgoing you have no audit trail to follow.
Efficiently using pick and pack is an important part of inventory management and supply chain logistics. Whether you are outsourcing your warehousing needs or handling them in-house, you need to follow certain procedures in order to ascertain you know everything that comes into your warehouse and leaves on its way to a customer.
You have to ascertain you know where everything is at all times including stock that comes in and immediately leaves under pick and pack methodology. Why does it matter if it’s going to immediately go to a customer? Unless you are hand delivering that merchandise, there is a chance it will never arrive at your customer’s destination, and if you have not recorded the merchandise as both incoming and outgoing inventory, you have no way of knowing if you actually shipped it.
Even if you are using manual inventory control you can efficiently use the pick and pack process to the advantage of your company and your customers. The most essential part of the process as we have already mentioned is making certain you track both incoming and outgoing inventory. Simply taking merchandise off one truck, repackaging it, and placing a new shipping label on it is not going to leave an audit trail so you can track the shipment from your supplier.
Even if your customer receives their order, what happens if you find a shortage in your inventory? Unless you have an efficient pick and pack system in place, you will have no way of know whether you received the product and filled the customer’s order from that or whether you filled in from stock already in your warehouse. If you are using a fulfillment service you will need to be able to log in and see what packages have arrived and what packages have been sent out to customers in a timely manner.Making the right choices will help you maintain efficient inventory management.