The case is an illustration of two ways of taking orders by a hardware; type 1 and type 2. The following is a summary of how these ways of taking orders operate.
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An order contains one or more products. The online line system identifies product through a unique key. The operator can see the available stock on hand that can be used to satisfy the order. If there is insufficient stock the operator has the opportunity to back order the goods if requested by the store. The operator can also see the expected delivery date for new stock which comes from hardware manufacturing companies.
The remote device ordering system is accepted via another system which stores the individual store orders. Every hour the online system interrogates the subsidiary system and transfers complete orders then the online system validates the details on the order. Products are validated for a correct unique key and a decision on back ordering is made depending on the customer preference to have goods out of stock back ordered.
It is a matter of fact that the warehouse needs to make new improvements to make it perform its function properly. The choices are few considering that the company does not have resources to finance expensive new warehouse system. In addition, the company is consumer centric and has no plan to expand the warehouse physical space. These are the main issues which should be considered while making the new improvements.
Any new improvements made should improve the quality of service the customer receives. The store people need to differentiate between frequently ordered goods from those that are not regularly ordered.
The warehouse could then ensure that the limited space at the warehouse is used majorly to store the frequently ordered goods. This would ensure that the consumer never fails to find such goods in the store. Goods which are not frequently ordered could be kept in manageable amounts so that whenever a customer makes large orders the ware house officials can negotiate for a back date.
In addition, the company could make arrangements with suppliers so that in case of urgent orders, the supplier should be willing to give the warehouse some special treatment like sending goods directly to consumer and then getting the real amount of the goods from the warehouse later after the goods are send to the consumer.
This would demand a lot of trust between the ware house and the supplier accompanied with some documentation. This method is effective for both type 1 and 2 ordering methods and would ensure that the warehouse never fails to fulfil urgent orders.
Alternatively, the company could install a similar system of information communication technology with its main customers. Through this, the warehouse person can be able to frequently communicate with these customers and make inquiries about which goods could be needed in the near future and then make arrangements of acquiring them.
The warehouse could also consider making contacts with local suppliers so as to avoid shipments from international suppliers once every two months by sea freights which are costly and time consuming.
In conclusion, the efficiency of the warehouse relies on creating a good relationship with its local suppliers so that it can be able to quickly and adequately respond to urgent orders.