Peak Demand

How to Manage Peak Demand During the Golden Quarter

Making Peak Season Count

In order to make peak season count, maximising your revenue potential within this time frame becomes crucial. It’s not merely about selling as many items of stock as possible (alt-hough this is largely what you’re aiming to do). It’s also about how you handle those orders when you receive that sudden spike in demand.

Handling Business Efficiency at Peak Times

As more orders come into the warehouse, the burden of fulfilment falls to warehouse management and staff, who must deal with a higher number of SKUs and larger, more complex orders.

Organisation plays a crucial role in the handling and efficiency of your business at peak times. From ensuring you have the right stock in the right variations, to providing a swift dispatch, and keeping your customers happy.

More Orders Generally Equates to More Challenges

Golden Quarter
On average, a retailer requires an additional 40% of stock during the peak period. So, for a company that has 6 million items of stock on premises on any normal day, this means hav-ing a further 2.4 million items on premises, which means requiring the space, processes and having the staff in place to handle a far larger volume of orders than usual.

Hiring temporary workers is a common practice during peak times. A large organisation could potentially hire thousands of temporary workers to assist with high order volumes. It’s easy to see how this influx of workers can present challenges.

What’s more, the challenges of the Christmas period take a weighty toll on warehouses that employ manual order fulfilment processes, requiring staff to run up and down the aisles to pick products and pack orders for shipment.

How a Warehouse Management System Can Help

With fluctuating resources throughout the year, and to be able to cope with the ever growing demand on retailers, a WMS hosts an array of benefits and allows you to gain:

  • Quick, Automated Processes
    Using a WMS can minimise holiday order complexities throughout the golden quarter period by managing inventory and moving products quickly and efficiently with use of automatic processes.
  • Faster Inventory Turnover
    By limiting inventory movement and improving record accuracy, a WMS can help to reduce lead times, reducing the need for safety stock.
  • Effective Stock Management
    With a WMS, such as a V-Store system, stock control is maintained live so that pickers are not directed to empty locations. Pick faces are monitored by a sophisticated replenishment system that ensures stock is delivered to the pick face efficiently.
  • Better Optimised Warehouse Space
    By more efficiently locating items in relation to sell-by date, receiving assembly, packing and shipping points, inventory holding costs can be lowered.
  • Reduced Inventory Paperwork
    Reports, pick tickers, move tickets and packing lists can all be maintained electronically with help from a WMS.
  • Reduced Warehouse Personnel
    By using a WMS, such as V-Store, to standardise inventory movements, picking methods and inventory locations, you’ll find you needn’t hire as many warehouse staff over the golden quarter. You’ll also notice error rates are lowered and training costs reduced.
  • Enhanced Customer Service
    By streamlining processes, from order to delivery, product availability can be more accurately determined giving more realistic delivery dates, which is an essential quality over the hectic festive period.
  • Improved Labour Productivity
    A WMS, such as V-Store, helps to optimise stock flow by utilising an automated replenishment system to top up pick face stock. Scanned picks provide a seamless link back into the software and then onto the invoice or transfer note.

Could your Business Benefit from a WMS?

If you are considering a warehouse management system change, you’re not alone. In fact, 71 percent of UK retailers say looking to improve their WMS is a business priority this year. Warehouses that implement a WMS see productivity and accuracy increase by an average of 30%. If you’d like to find out more about gaining a WMS, contact us at Vardells today.