Thursday, October 02, 2014

Which Warehouse Locations Are Lean and Lucrative?

Of all the fearful factors that business owners and logistics managers have to deal with, one of the things they dread the most is idle inventory. As if supply chains aren’t boring enough as it is (or so people think!), the term idle inventory just exudes negativity. No company, whether mom and pop sized or international corporation sized, is ever content with anything business-related being idle or stagnant.
Movement is a universal mission for businesses of all shapes and sizes because it encompasses so many variations of change. Obviously, expansion and upward financial growth are the most well-received forms of movement within a business model, but lateral moves and tactical turns can also be highly regarded.
Achieving desired directional shifts starts with the implementation of effective strategies and changes. Improving the movement of goods and inventory, for example, means the current storage strategy needs to be assessed. Often times, after a thorough review, businesses realize that commercial warehouses are basically the secret to storage success. In the long run, leasing or owning a storage facility of this magnitude equates to asset acquisition.
Commercial warehouses have gained an increasing amount of attention over the years, and for good reason. These specialized storage structures are beneficial to companies across all niches and industries, they can be used for a variety of purposes and functions, and they can store virtually any type of inventory.
In order to effectively incorporate commercial warehouses into your business operations, a number of factors must be considered. One of the first, and most important questions that needs to be answered before anything is signed or spent is –  
How do you choose a warehouse location?
Picking the Place for Productivity
The reason why location plays such a significant role in warehouse management is because the storage facility will serve as a central hub, or at least that should be a primary goal. Deciding which warehouse location will be best for your business depends on the answers to these questions:
·   Will goods be delivered to the warehouse facility, picked up, or both?
·  Will boats be used to receive and export goods?
·   How far will drivers typically be traveling in order to distribute your inventory?
·   What kinds of trucks will be accessing the building?
·   How congested is the city where the warehouse buildings are?
·   What does the economy look like in the designated city?
·   What is the tax in the potential region?
·   How many, if any, major interstates are easily accessed from the location?
·   Where is the rental or leasing company located in relation to where the storage buildings are?
·   If additional square footage or more warehouses are needed in the future, will the particular location be able to accommodate those expansion needs?
Acquiring warehouse space is not a quick-fix business solution. It requires a significant amount of time, research, and patience. In addition to the geographical location, you must also consider factors such as short and long term costs, customization options, lease terms, and the reputation of the warehousing company. 

Remember – Slow and steady wins the race, especially when picking warehouse space!

This guest post was written by previous Supply Chains Rock contributor Kaitlyn Nakagoshi - Web Content Manager for The Ruthvens, a family-owned commercial warehouse company in Lakeland, Florida. Kaitlyn is a native Floridian who graduated from the University of South Florida with degrees in Business Management and Political Science. When she's not writing copy pages or blog posts, Kaitlyn enjoys hot yoga, online shopping, golf, college football Saturdays, and brunching on Sundays. She lives in Tampa, but hopes to soon trade in her east coast roots for a San Francisco zip code. Follow her on Twitter @TampaKaity.


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