Three reasons your warehouse needs scalability
What is scalability?
According to the Oxford University Press, it has two meanings. One in the form of general usage, and one in the form of computing specifically. Your warehouse needs the first, and your warehousing software needs the second.
In general usage, scalability is defined as “the capacity to be changed in size or scale”.
This is a vital condition for your warehouse. The ability to grow will always be a major advantage for any operation at the scale where efficient and professional warehousing is a day-to-day activity. That is why empowering scalability of operations is a key component of Invar Warehousing Software.
To understand just how important this vision of scalability is to any warehouse utilising business, consider the following three big advantages.
Proactivity vs Reactivity
Scalability is not the same thing as growing. For whatever reason, your business might not be in the best space to grow right now, but that doesn’t mean you shouldn’t be able to when the time comes. Scalability is important, because it is much harder to both make yourself ready to do something, and then do it. If you’re already ready, things get much easier. This is why scalability is proactive.
The word proactive is defined as “acting in anticipation of future problems, needs, or changes.”
Scalability means to be ready for the change of prosperity when it emerges. Your business needs to be ready to scale, because when growth arrives it will need immediate response. Being unable to process larger order numbers on a regular basis could lead to a perception of unreliability and close off your growth opportunities just as they’ve begun. Being unable to keep track of higher order volumes could give a perception of unprofessionalism which could also damage future prospects.
Your warehouse needs to be ready to scale because the modern marketplace requires proactivity. When you think about going to the supermarket, are you comforted that you can do that easily because your garage has a whole host of car components and engine parts stored neatly, or are you better served by a fully assembled and operational vehicle? Be proactive. Be scalable.
Factor in the spikes
Very few warehouses operate with a consistent level of demand. There will always be seasons where any product that you sell will be in higher demand or greater, which means you will need to be faster, more accurate, and generally more efficient.
Scalability makes all this easier. The ability to switch to a higher level of operation and adjust accordingly makes the process of bringing in more staff, faster systems, and more efficient operations radically easier. Since the entire point of being a scalable business is to be able to handle changes in operational scale on the macro level, your business is thus already better equipped to do so in the micro form.
Given that seasons and spikes are an inevitable part of virtually every business model, whether it’s B2B, B2C, or any blend of the two, this advantage is near universal. Readiness in the long term naturally comes with the byproduct of readiness in the short term. Your business needs that readiness. Your warehouse needs to be scalable.
Clear competitive edge
The more scalable your business is, the better able you will be to take advantage of opportunity when it arises. The sooner you are able to seize such a chance, the less able your opponents and competitors will be able to do the same.
By being a pre-prepared and scalable business, your business can take on more orders to more customers more quickly as and when the time arises. This allows for an overall greater market presence, which by extension makes the market harder to play in for your competitors. If they are less scalable than you, while they are all busy still building up their capacities, your operations will be in full swing, taking orders and shipping goods.
The advantage in a competitive field of having the readiness to grow without compromising the overall operations of your business is obvious. You can expand more quickly to take up market space. Space that will not be available to your competitors once you are done growing.
The alternative definition
The second definition of “scalability” offered is linked to computer operations. It is defined as “the ability of a computing process to be used or produced in a range of capabilities.”
This definition links in very pleasingly with the first when it comes to warehousing.
If you want your warehouse to be scalable in the first sense, you need your warehousing software to be scalable in the second.
Software that can help support goods-in, picking, shipping, works and kitting, courier integration, data visualisation, and any number of other tasks associated with the day to day workings of a warehouse.
This is what IWS makes possible. Discover more about Invar Warehousing Software by reading our brochure in full below.
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