How A Pick and Pack Warehouse Works

Loading oranges into a refrigerator car at a c...

Image by The Library of Congress via Flickr

Pick and pack is a popular warehouse storage and shipping technique that is used by thousands of businesses. Orders are filled from stock that is already on site, and it’s efficiently shipped within a short window of time so that customers get their items quickly.  It begins when computers generate lists of the products that must be shipped. Workers then “pick” these items off of shelves in the warehouse and “pack” them for an upcoming shipment.

How does pick and pack save money? It really is quite simple. The advantage of system is that is provides costs saving by eliminating inefficiencies in the warehouse. Large or heavy items that arrive in bulk can be stored on pallets or in commodious boxes, while single, assembled items can be kept on shelves for easy access. Finished bulk items come to the warehouse and are broken down into smaller quantities and placed on shelves. Then when the computer records an order, these items are picked up, packaged and shipped.

It is a simple and efficient way to store items, manage inventory and keep track of current orders.  Large businesses use pick and pack fulfillment because it simplifies their supply chain logistics and make it unnecessary to maintain their own warehouses or pools of employees.  Large businesses often will buy huge quantities of products and store them at a fulfillment center that has pick and pack fulfillment because they have high enough sales volumes to justify huge, bulk inventories.

But small business can benefit from using pick and pack warehousing and fulfillment too.  Smaller businesses can take advantage of big discounts that companies offer for bulk orders because contracting with a fulfillment company gives small businesses the storage space they need without the up front cost of buying or renting a warehouse.  Small businesses can also benefit from the well trained customer service staff and order fulfillment staff who are hired, trained, and supervised by the pick and pack fulfillment company.  Small businesses that use these fulfillment centers can deliver the kind of top notch service that customers expect from larger businesses while still maintaining their small business appeal.  They are more competitive and have the chance to become real competition for the bigger businesses in their markets.