Warehouse Protocols

Your company is running fine then one day someone gets hurt or makes a complaint and it all goes downhill,  fast.  Allegations  are fired at you stating that you did not provide adequate training, that there were no systems in place, etc, etc.   But you were doing what you thought was right, you did not do anything wrong – in today’s world that will not cut it. What you think (or don’t think) can get you in trouble.

This particular flash is about warehousing although it can apply to every area of your business. You need to draft some protocols, some instructions, an explanation of who does what and when they should do it.

I call them guidelines, but they can be called anything for example work instructions or procedures,  as long as you make sure they are used and understood by everyone.  In this scenario I am referring to the warehouse, but it can apply to any part of your business.

So you are storing and distributing products from your own warehouse – have you documented what happens and who does it and more importantly who does what when it goes wrong?  Your document should include sections such as Responsibilities, Hazard Identification, Risk assessment, Risk Control, etc. These, along with a number of other item are important in running a safe and efficient business.  Yes it is not just about safety, it also includes efficiency and effectiveness.  In simplistic terms efficiency = dollars and effectiveness = goals.

When you have a document that covers such things then you can start moving forward, defining where you are and what needs to change, plus it is a way of ensuring that everyone knows what should happen, when it should happen and who to turn to when it doesn’t. Then build in review cycles, these should include those ‘on the line’ as they will know far more than you what is and is not happening. Use this knowledge, it is free and possibly (probably?) have positive repercussions for your company.

And as always, if you need help, I am only a call (or email) away.