Smarter Packaging Will Reduce Your Warehouse Running Costs

If you are in charge of a warehousing operation which does its own packaging, then you are well aware of the associated costs. Running your business at a profit means keeping operational costs as low as possible without compromising productivity and efficiency. One of the ways to reduce excess spending on product packaging is as simple as using the correct size box. Some warehouse operators tend to overlook this important aspect; others are forced to use unsuitable packaging by their couriers. 

Are You Paying Too Much For Your Product Packaging?

Obviously, the safe transit of goods from your warehouse to clients requires adequate packaging corresponding to the product’s general properties as well as its aggregate state, fragility, chemical content, etc. Having said that, a number of recent surveys conducted with the help of leading warehouse operators suggest that some businesses are paying too much for unsuitable packaging. 

This is not caused by sloppy operational practices alone though. In many cases it is couriers and carriers who require certain types and sizes of packaging to be used by warehouse shippers in order to meet haulage requirements. The main reason being transport costs. Your goods courier would be looking to reduce their transit costs as much as possible, which in some cases is achieved by using uniformed packaging which isn’t necessarily suited for the particular product or item your warehouse needs shipped. 

On another note, the reduction of operational costs in your warehousing facility might come down to using the correct storage infrastructure. For example, pallet racks and shelving. According to warehouse racking specialists Speedrack West out of Oregon, inadequate pallet shelves can attribute to higher running costs and increase order processing time unnecessarily. 

As you have probably gathered by now, reducing unnecessary operational spending at your warehouse can be a tight balancing act, with many variables to account for. 

Getting back to the correct packaging box scenario, what can you actually do to reduce material waste and excess spending on packaging?

In a nutshell, downsize to the correct box and enjoy better cost efficiency.

As a warehouse operator, you might have noticed that ‘shipping air’ is getting more expensive. What does that mean? It simply means that inadequate packaging (say, a box too large for the item it houses) wastes both your money and your resources. Until recently, the bad habit of ‘shipping air’ was a widespread problem as shippers and storage house operators didn’t really have the financial incentive to use correct size packaging. In other words, it was cheap enough to use large boxes for small items.

Lately though, haulers and couriers have changed their practices and policies in such way so that using the correct size and weight packaging is becoming quite important for warehouse shippers and suppliers. Enter the volumetric system. The volumetric system represents a new way of forming the transit charges you incur for transporting goods from your warehouse to a client or another business partner.

Say you wanted to reduce your warehouse shipping charges. The easiest way to go about this is to analyze your facility’s daily goods packaging routine and identify what can be improved on. Consider some of the following:

  1. The use of correct sized boxes reduces resource waste – your business spends less on purchase of unnecessary packaging materials and supplies.
  2. Utilization of reusable packaging materials – such packing supplies can be returned to you by customers, creating a close circuit usage which again reduces your running costs.
  3. Local authority schemes may provide you with business tax rebates for using a particular type or amount of approved packaging material.

A smart business translates to a profitable business, so ensure yours is both!

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