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Amazon's Warehousing

By Admin | March 23, 2020

Without a well-constructed Warehouse Management System, you may find your business suffering in multiple areas, with inefficient processes impacting your operations and supply chain down the line.

Here we're going to have a look at Amazon 's Warehouse where they have fully optimized their supply chain and succeeded in meeting their customers' expectations with regards to delivery, quality and consistency.

Amazon warehouses not only store products but also serve as distribution centres where associates pick, pack, and ship orders quickly and efficiently. Amazon robotics, scanning machines, and computer systems in fulfilment centres can track millions of items in a day.

The WMS facilitates recording inventory and efficiently locating items for onward shipping or assembly. This, in turn, improves your warehouse efficiency and allows for a smoother operation from inbound to outbound operations.

Many retailers, both physical and online, don’t run their own warehouses. While they may have their own backrooms, their major inventory is stored in a warehouse space that they lease or rent. To fulfil orders, third-party transportation companies ship the goods to customers or to the companies’ retail stores. As a result, warehouse inventory management is also executed by a third party.

For Amazon, this isn’t a concern. Amazon owns its warehouses and most of its inventory. Amazon stores the majority of the stuff it sells on its platform and, increasingly, the stuff other businesses sell on its platform. In other words, the company manages a gargantuan amount of space. By the end of 2018, Amazon-owned 288 million square feet of space, warehouse space included.

Major portions of Amazon’s fulfilment centre are automated. The robots whisk hundreds of pounds of products at high speed across the warehouse space, where the boxed products stream down the chutes to expectant conveyor belts. There is hardly any human intervention.

These robots form a perfect geometrical tracks hauling products from one place to the other in an endless series of calculations involving an array of constantly shifting factors.

This entire system is called the "random stow" in Amazon and has been in place for years. The only difference that now it is automated.

Automation and streamlining of processes reduce error rates when dependency on manpower lessens. This reduction in human error and administration time allows a faster, more appropriate response to sudden changes, errors, or upheavals that may occur.

Amazon caters six different types of Warehouses for optimized customer service.

Sortable: Here, Amazon associates pick, pack, and ship customer orders such as books, toys and housewares and many work alongside Amazon Robotics.

Non-sortable: In these buildings, Amazon associates pick, pack, and ship bulky or larger-sized customer items such as patio furniture, outdoor equipment, or rugs.

Sortation centres: At sort centres, associates sort customer orders by final destination and consolidate them onto lorries for faster delivery.

Receive centres: Amazon’s receive centres take large orders of the types of inventory that quickly sell and portioning it out to fulfilment centres within the network.

Speciality: These buildings handle specific categories of items or are used in different capacities at busy times of the year such as the holiday retail peak season.

Delivery stations: At delivery stations, they prepare customer orders for last-mile delivery to customers.

With the simplification of all operations - from inventory control, staff management and space management of goods – your inventory management improves, and your pick accuracy and timings are optimised to create a faster turnaround in the inventory department.

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