Audits have time and again offered valuable insights on important data that can be used to achieve business objectives. Right from end-to-end inspections of supply chains to a thorough analysis of distinct warehouse tasks, you stand to gain information that can be used to improve the way work is done in a warehouse.
Audits should be at the core of all operations that heavily lean on efficiency. Here, supply chains and warehouse are the prime beneficiaries of auditing. When a successful supply chain auditing is conducted, opportunities relating to risk mitigation and cost control are highlighted. You can then proceed to progress in your operations as it hinges on the derived observations.
With the help of supply chain audits, you can make the most of visibility and business intelligence surrounding operations and logistics.
While conducting audits, isn’t all rainbows and unicorn, there are multiple benefits that you can reap.
Let’s take a look at some of the benefits that your warehouse operations can make the most of!
1. Provision of Precise Information
In today’s fast-paced business environment, warehouses and distribution centres won’t be able to sustain and stand their ground with lousy error rates. This is why meticulousness in the way tasks are performed is an essential requirement. There’s no room for mistakes which is why auditing is done to shed light on the inefficiencies of the process.
2. Evaluating the Extent of Quality Control
Supply chain audits go beyond the walls of your warehouse as they also take into account the external aspects and their impact in the workflow. This is done to ensure that the supply chain functions at peak efficiency while locating points of breakdowns and interruptions at both micro and macro levels.
3. Mitigating Supply-chain Risk
When you maintain detailed and specific assessments and records of the various partners and suppliers, you can predict inconveniences that can hinder the supply chain management. When you can anticipate what’s likely to go wrong in the process before it even happens, you can diminish the impact of potential breakdowns as you can fall back on the contingency plans.
4. Recognising Unethical and Unsafe Sourcing
Supply chains audits can identify where businesses need to focus to improve the sustainability of the process. This is crucial because supply chains have evolved to have a positive and neutral impact on the environment considering it is the need of the hour. It is rightly said that you can’t fix something that you haven’t measured yet. With supply chain audits, you can highlight how the processes within your warehouse have progressed while being mindful of your sustainability goals.
5. Recognising Geopolitical and Natural Risks
On the face of it, natural disasters and trade wars might not seem to have many commonalities. But it is worth noticing that both aspects have a substantial impact on operations and supply chains. When you audit your supply chains, you will be able to glean extensive clarity on events that are unpredictable.
The Sucess of a Supply Chain Audit
From an operational standpoint, auditing of the supply chain will help disclose the potential and existing weak points within your warehouse. It will also help you understand the external elements of the operations that impact your business. Auditing for different businesses will be bespoke to their requirement which is why one-size fits all approach just won’t work. For a successful auditing, you must know and understand the exactness of your purpose and what you think you will accomplish from it.
The Scale of Supply Chain Audits
Depending on your aims and expectations the scale of auditing can vary greatly. You can include just a single floor or department of your warehouse or include partners and suppliers who are a part of the supply chain at every point. This is where having a clear idea of objectives comes into the picture.
Auditing doesn’t necessarily have to be a grand project. That’s because small tweaks and changes at the department-level alone can have a great impact on operations. These can be insightful as they help detect areas that you can improve upon.
For instance, let’s take pallet management into consideration. Evaluation of the flow of a pallet across your facility will help highlight the areas that can do with a bit of improvement. Such an examination can help you polish your racking, loading and automation strategies. This can help you optimise the performance in and around your warehouse while benefiting buyers and clients.
Auditing pallet-management can help discover underlying opportunities that can add to your revenue from selling off extra pallets that you no longer need in your operation.
The Approach for Auditing
When you do perform an audit, ensure that you don’t underestimate it. If you are considering auditing on a large-scale, it can prove to be complicated not to mention expensive as well. On the other hand, small-scale audits are comparatively more easy and manageable. These might not give you a comprehensive and aggregate picture of the weaknesses, but they help reveal more opportunities that can improve operational inefficiencies.
Application of the Findings Gleaned from Auditing
It is very important that you identify key takeaways from your audits and how to put that information to use. Supply chain audits can uncover both systematic issues like pallet and rack management and one-off issues like automatic door repairs and maintenance. Once you classify your findings, taking the next step becomes easy.
In either case, conducting a supply chain audit in your warehouse puts everyone under the radar. This is good because you will have access to real-time data that is integral in improving productivity and overall efficiency.
It might not be something that you would particularly enjoy, but the substantial benefits that you can gain from this cannot be ignored. So, go ahead and get an audit done!