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Handling Bulk Stock in the Warehouse

Supplier: RF Barcode Systems By: Timothy Muir
23 November, 2010

Are you using Excel sheets to keep track of stock stored on bulk pallets? If so, read on...

In this post, I want to discuss some best practice ways to handle bulk stock in your warehouse.
We often visit sites where staff spend large amounts of time trying to locate bulk stock stored in the warehouse.  We find that the warehouse has an Excel spreadsheet where a record is kept of where each item is stored. Alternatively, the location of stock items might be written on a white-board hanging at the end of each aisle.
Team members typically spend several hours per week walking up and down the aisles craning their neck to find a pallet with the correct stock code written on the stretch-wrap. (This is usually because the information on the whiteboard or spreadsheet is inaccurate).
We find the most successful warehouses can avoid these issues through the use of mobile computers / scanners.
  • Print off a roll of 'license plate' labels. Each label is unique, and includes a barcode printed large
  • enough to scan from the ground.
  • Each time you receive in stock, take the next license plate from the roll and apply it to the outside of the pallet.
  • Use a scanner to record the items you have received, and scan the license plate number to record the items it contains.
  • Scan the pallet into a bulk storage bin.
Now when you need to replenish a picking location, you can search through the database to find which bin locations hold bulk stock, and you can also find the 'oldest' license plate number to assist in stock rotation. You can use the scanner to update the pallet's contents immediately and you won't need to write down the transaction and fix your spreadsheet or whiteboard.