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Scaling up Pick and Pack Process
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Does the busy holiday season push your warehouse operation into overdrive? Would you like to speed up order fulfillment so your customers receive their orders sooner and at the same time reduce your warehouse operation costs by as much as 30%? If so, you may consider optimizing your pick and pack process.

Pick and pack is an integral and costly component of the order fulfillment process that is commonly used in the retail distribution of goods to consumers. It is labor intensive, time consuming and prone to errors and inefficiencies as many customer orders need to be processed under time and resource constraints. The typical steps involve receiving one or more customer orders at the warehouse, collecting the items required to fill the orders from storage racks located across warehouse into a pick cart, and returning the full pick cart to the packing station where items for each filled order are boxed and scheduled for shipment.

The biggest bottleneck of the process involves traversing the storage racks to pick items for packing. Ideally, you would like to mimimize the total travel distance required for picking orders while at the same time ensuring the right items are picked without overfilling the pick cart. To this end, you can make use of technology such as SolvingMaze Batch Pick API to optimize the process for you. The Batch Pick API is simple to set up. You only need to model your warehouse layout using the graphical tool in your account. The API accepts pick cart dimension and a list of customer orders with information such as purchased items with their quantities and storage locations. The API then groups the orders selectively into batches so that the total travel distance required for picking items from warehouse storage racks is minimized without overfilling the pick cart for each pick batch. The API returns a pick list detailing where and how many of the items to pick for each optimized batch of orders. A pick route navigation map is also include to guide the pickers in fulfilling the pick list.

To further expedite the pick and pack process, you can also use the SolvingMaze Pack and Quote API in your warehouse management system to generate packing lists and find the right type of packaging box to use for each order so your packers do not have to waste time searching for the right size box through trial and error. The Pack and Quote API is easy to set up. Simply enter your box specifications and select the shipping couriers in your SolvingMaze account. For your convenience, the system also includes common USPS, UPS and FedEx flat rate boxes to choose from which may help you save shipping costs. Once your account is set up, you can pass in the weight, dimensions and quantities of items in a sales order to the calculator. It will automatically determine which boxes to use for packing as well as estimate shipment rates if needed.

By utilizing SolvingMaze Advanced Shipping Calculator to expedite your pick and pack process in an orderly fashion, you can manage your orders efficiently, increase productivity of your warehouse operation and scale up to seasonal demands at anytime without significant increase in operation costs.

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