Imagine a warehouse that wasn’t just a place to store inventory, but also an essential stop along the distribution path for delivering goods to customers, then you have the idea behind rolling inventory management. This innovative inventory management strategy aims to make a significant shift from the conventional method, where warehouse employees unload the truck delivering goods and then store them in the warehouse before moving them to their final locations. However, with rolling inventory, a delivery truck becomes an extension of the warehouse, making the inventory rolling and seamless, thereby cutting down costs and expediting the delivery process.
In this article, we’ll explain the concept of rolling inventory, how it works and its benefits, and why it could be the best inventory management strategy for your warehouse.
What is Rolling Inventory Management?
Rolling inventory is a strategy that eliminates the need for unloading and loading delivery trucks. Instead, inventory remains in the trailer, which is then rolled into the warehouse yard until it’s due for final delivery. The idea of rolling inventory management was first proposed in 2003 by researchers at the University of Massachusetts in Amherst. The strategy aims to significantly reduce or eliminate the costs associated with unloading and reloading delivery trucks. By keeping the inventory semi-full or full of trailers in the warehouse yard, rolling inventory management saves labor/handling costs.
The Advantages of Rolling Inventory Management
Rolling inventory management is an innovative approach that impacts several aspects of warehouse operation. It offers several benefits, ranging from cost savings to improved delivery times, increasing customer satisfaction. One of the advantages of rolling inventory management is that it leads to improved space utilization. By keeping inventory in the trailer, companies can eliminate or reduce the need for space to store products. Additionally, rolling inventory can lead to reduced labor and handling costs, as the need to handle products repeatedly is eliminated.
Another benefit of rolling inventory management is that it leads to improved efficiency in warehouse operations. Since the inventory is already in the trailer when it arrives at the warehouse, the need for sorting and handling is eliminated. This increases efficiency and speeds up the delivery process. By implementing rolling inventory management, warehouses can improve customer satisfaction by delivering products quickly and accurately.
Implementing Rolling Inventory Management
Before implementing rolling inventory management, companies must consider their business requirements and whether the strategy will align with their needs. Companies should consider factors such as space utilization, handling costs, delivery times, and labor costs. Once a company has decided to implement rolling inventory management, the next step is developing a plan. The plan must include procedures for loading, unloading and sorting products and must consider how products are located within the trailer. Companies must train employees on the new procedures, and management must monitor performance continually.
Rolling inventory management can be a game-changer for warehouses looking to increase efficiency, reduce handling costs, and improve customer satisfaction. The strategy eliminates the need to unload/loading delivery trucks, thereby streamlining the delivery process and reducing operational costs. By keeping inventory in a trailer, warehouse managers can better utilize their space, leading to potential cost savings. Rolling inventory management is an innovative approach, but its implementation requires careful consideration. Companies must evaluate their specific needs and develop a comprehensive plan for implementing the strategy. Overall, rolling inventory management could be the solution to reducing costs, improving efficiency, and delivering products to customers quickly and accurately. Would you like help successfully setting up your warehouse operations to accommodate rolling inventory? Book a no obligation consultation with one of our consultants today.