Michael SachsWarehouse operations are fundamental to the service-parts business. So, you’d think that when you bring 21 companies together, all in the business of distributing motor-vehicle service-parts, that there would be a lot of commonality in the way they operate their distribution centers. Well, nothing could be further from the truth. Earlier this month, we closed out our 2012 North America Parts Benchmark (NAPB) cycle in Chicago with a Focus Day devoted to the subject of outbound warehouse operations (actually, it lasted 1.5 days – lots to talk about). Once we got through the basics of high level facility and performance comparisons, we broke the session down into the following modules:
- Picking Strategies
- Safety and Environmental
- There is no single way to achieve high levels of warehouse operations performance.
- While it is difficult to determine the key drivers of performance for any given OEM, the fact that each OEM does so many things differently from the next, even among top performers, suggests that everyone still has room for improvement.
- All of the above commentary, and accompanying charts, are interesting, but what really makes the 1.5 day investment valuable is the conversation about what companies actually do inside the four walls to achieve their performance levels.
- Bring together a large group of subject matter experts who all have a passion for warehouse excellence and over the course of 1.5 days everyone will learn many interesting things (as indicated by the 94% top-box overall satisfaction with the event), regardless of their performance level, and leave with their own customized list of ideas and action items.