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Warehousing & Fulfillment

The Warehouse Receiving Process: What You Need to Know

The warehouse receiving process is one of the most important facets of the supply chain. Here's the full scoop.
The Warehouse Receiving Process: What You Need to Know
Alexandra Ortolani

By Alexandra Ortolani

 

December 6, 2021

Key Points:

  • The warehouse receiving process is one of the most important steps of supply chain management for eCommerce sites
  • The warehouse receiving process steps include delivery of the products, unloading from the delivery trunk, and inventory storage
  • An optimized receiving process can also affect how you store, manage and track your products

The warehouse receiving process is the most critical phase of supply chain management. If anything goes wrong, it can cause significant issues for the subsequent warehouse operations.

When there is no standard receiving process to ensure that shipments are received in the correct order, there will be a poor customer experience. Customers might have to cancel their online shopping orders or wait longer before getting their products.

This blog will discuss improving your receiving process, the benefits of having an optimized receiving process, and how Easyship can help you tick your warehouse receiving process checklist with ease.

Receiving Warehouse Definition

Table of Contents

What's the Receiving Warehouse Definition?

Warehouse receiving refers to the process of replenishing stocked inventory in a warehouse center. It's the initial step involved in delivering an order to a customer.

The receiving process steps involve:

  • Delivery of the products
  • Unloading from the delivery trunk
  • Inventory storage

To have order fulfillment, you need a smooth receiving process as a business. An optimal warehouse receiving process ensures that other warehouse operations are successful.

What Are The Benefits Of An Optimized Receiving Process?

An optimized receiving process aims to ensure that goods ordered from the suppliers are delivered in the right quantities, in good conditions, and at the proper time. When your receiving procedures are faulty, your inventory records become inaccurate, making it challenging to fulfill your customers' orders.

Optimizing your receiving process will offer your business tons of benefits and save you a lot of stress and issues. Here are a few benefits:

Ensure accurate stock counts

When you have inaccurate inventory records, you will often disappoint your customers because of unmet expectations. Having a precise count of your stocks can help you to prevent retail issues such as inventory shrinkage, stockouts. Online shoppers want a positive customer experience and ensuring accurate stock counts mean customers receive a great customer experience.

Also, it helps manage your sales predictions. For instance, creating a comprehensive receiving process flow chart to check if the right products are received in the correct order, helps you know your inventory levels. Plus, you can replenish a product that you predicted might be in demand or notify your customers when an item is available.

Prevent overstocking or understocking of products

When you don't have enough goods in stock to fulfill your customers' orders, you are experiencing a stockout. In contrast, overstock or dead stock refers to products that are not likely to be sold. Overstock items are because items are expired, out of season, or not in demand.

When you accumulate a considerable amount of inventory that doesn't yield any returns, then you have dead stock. Often, dead stocks or stockouts are caused by inaccurate inventory count. By implementing an ideal warehouse receiving process, you can accurately determine when your orders from the suppliers are incomplete or if you need to order more.

Provide an efficient inventory storage system

An optimized receiving process can also affect how you store, manage and track your products. It makes it possible to keep your inventory costs low while improving transit times and lowering shipping costs.

For instance, the Warehouse Management System (WMS) is a valuable tool for tracking supplies through the warehouse. WMS is used to scan inventory when received, mark and record where the items are stored, and provide instructions on picking, packing, and shipping them when ordered.

What Are the Warehouse Receiving Process Steps?

Receiving goods into the warehouse is not just purchasing from the suppliers and having them delivered to your store in a few weeks. To have a smooth warehouse operation, you need to be strategic about your receiving process.

Below are steps required in an ideal warehouse receiving process:

Proper documentation

Before you order and receive your purchase, there are specific tasks that you must do to ensure that your cargo is delivered correctly and in time. These tasks are called pre-receiving tasks.

They involve proper documentation of your receiving requirements for the suppliers and shippers. Here, you will decide and state your packaging requirements.

The packaging requires will include:

  • Label information
  • Number of items per container
  • Number of packages per pallet
  • Number of items per carton
  • The required size and weight

If you outsource the eCommerce logistics of your business to a third-party company, you will need to check for their pre-receiving tasks.

Different third-party logistics (3PL) companies have varying approaches to sending inventory to warehouses. So, you must adhere to their instructions before sending them your inventory.

Often, the process involves answering a Warehouse Receiving Order (WRO) label, which will be attached to each stock. The label contains a barcode that will be scanned using a WMS to provide the data on your purchase and tp ensure you are receiving the correct order.

Receiving and unloading

The next step in the warehouse receiving process is to receive and unload your shipment. When the delivery truck arrives at the unloading dock, your receiving staff should be prepared to meet with the shipper to receive your cargo.

The staff must be well-trained in handling the receiving process to avoid getting incorrect shipments. If there are any issues, questions, or discrepancies, the receiving team should discuss them with the shipper before signing off the shipping notice.

Inventory count

After the receiving phase, the cargo should be unloaded, and each product received should be counted to ensure that the correct quantity was shipped.

The holiday shopping season is in full swing, and eCommerce sites like Amazon and Walmart are two key examples that have an efficient warehouse receiving process to keep up with holiday sales. Although inventory count is only one step in the process, it remains crucial for online retailers like Amazon and Walmart.

Inventory inspection

The warehouse personnel should inspect each item for possible damage caused during the shipping process. Damaged products should be set aside and returned for replacements. Other features to check out include the product codes, the integrity of the seals, products listed on the WRO vs. the products delivered, etc.

Inventory storage

This stage is the final phase of the receiving process, and it involves arranging and storing the new products in the warehouse. The products can be stored on a shelf, a pallet, or a bin.  By partnering with a 3PL, you don't have to worry about this phase because the staff will handle the storage process.

How Easyship Improves Warehouse Receiving Stock Procedures

Optimizing your warehouse receiving process is essential, especially for meeting holiday shipping deadlines. Businesses without an effective receiving process often run out of stock when their products are in demand or overstock when they are out of season.

Warehouse receiving procedures can be pretty stressful. But, with Easyship, your inventory delivery can be as smooth as silk. Easyship provides users up to 70% off discounted shipping rates on 250+ couriers. Plus, improve transit times, lower shipping costs, and more when accessing our global warehouse network. This way, you can reach your customers all across the globe.

Here are a few ways Easyship can help improve your business and boost online sales:

  • Global Fulfillment: Ship your products to 220+ countries with ease. Easyship provides its customers with warehouses in four continents to store and ship their products
  • Shipping Rates Calculator: Discounted shipping rates up to 70% off of 250+ couriers for domestic and international couriers
  • Automated Label Generation: Easyship instantly generates all your shipping labels necessary for shipping. All you need to do is print, and you’re ready for shipping
  • Real-time shipping rates: Show the cheapest, fastest, and best value shipping options  to help avoid cart abandonment and convert more visitors to more online sales

Having an effective warehouse receiving process might seem complicated, but it is achievable. By following these tips and applying them to your business, you can easily optimize your receiving operations.

Register a free Easyship account today to optimize your warehouse receiving process and help your business remain relevant in the marketplace.


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