Woman wearing a hardhat on phone in warehouse

Directing Warehouse Traffic With Ease

Logistics facilities are a constant flurry of activity. Drivers arrive with deliveries while others prepare to take off with a loaded truck or trailer. Warehouse managers check loads in and out. Workers move freight from truck to warehouse or vice versa. Inspectors and auditors come through to ensure safety and/or compliance. And occasionally, a customer, executive, or shareholder might pop in. 

With all of this movement, security and safety are significant concerns. You can’t afford to have unaccounted-for visitors wandering through all of this activity without oversight. You also need to maintain a certain level of productivity, which is difficult to do when, for example, drivers don’t know where to check in their loads or safety inspectors can’t find the warehouse manager. 

And then there’s adherence to compliance standards. When people walk around unattended and without the proper safety gear or training, it becomes a hazard, and the resulting cost of any accident could be substantial. 

Factors Affecting Warehouse Productivity

The various moving parts in a warehouse must all sync up every second of the day, or operations could come grinding to a halt. Many factors affect productivity, but here are three primary ones:


Things can get backed up at any point in your operational workflow. However, you may notice some areas where processes take longer than usual, creating a backlog of work. This can happen when multiple drivers arrive at once, or when new shipments get unloaded and there aren’t enough people to put everything away, for instance. This is usually the result of lengthy manual processes that are dependent on the timely coordination of just a few specific roles.

Safety Concerns

Your warehouse likely contains various machinery and/or potentially hazardous materials. If that is the case, everyone in your facility must receive some sort of safety training or, at the very least, safety gear. When visitors stop by, it’s imperative that they understand how to conduct themselves in order to reduce the risk of an accident, and relaying this information to them can be time-intensive.  

Lack of Resources

Staffing shortages are everywhere, and the logistics industry in particular knows this struggle all too well. Of course, having a lean staff can create bottlenecks, but it can also mean that certain important duties don’t get done. When seemingly small tasks slip through the cracks, they can create larger problems down the road. 

Leveraging Technology to Direct the Flow of Warehouse Traffic

Many elements of these issues can be easily solved with the right technology. Businesses that have yet to embrace technology are already behind, as solutions are ever-evolving to include capabilities we’ve never seen before, especially with all of the advancements being made in artificial intelligence (AI).

There are many ways to leverage technology in a warehouse, including apps, software, and myriad Internet of Things (IoT) devices. Most logistics facilities use systems like:

  • Warehouse management: for day-to-day warehouse operations
  • Transportation management: for planning and optimizing routes
  • Real-time location: provides by-the-minute updates about the movement of goods
  • Inventory management: tracks inventory levels and movements
  • Labor management: helps optimize labor resources
  • Enterprise resource planning: encompasses all areas of a business, including finance, HR, and inventory management

There are solutions and systems available that have the capability to perform multiple tasks at once as well. 

Visitor Management

One need that often gets overlooked is managing the foot traffic coming in and out of the warehouse. Recording this information is vital to ensure the safety and security of your facility. Everyone who, for example, might find themselves in the vicinity of the baler should know where to find the emergency shutoff button. 

A visitor management system like The Receptionist for iPad allows all visitors to announce their arrival, ensuring no one wanders off on a side quest through your warehouse. The system is customizable and can integrate with other types of software, allowing you to set parameters for the different types of visitors you receive. 

If a job candidate, last-mile delivery driver, or the warehouse manager’s spouse comes to the facility, they can check in seamlessly. You can configure the system to show the visitor a safety training video, sign a privacy agreement, or print a badge for easy identification. 

The system can also integrate with other solutions to ensure drivers complete a checklist of actions, such as inspecting and securing their truck, ensuring the bill of lading (BOL) matches the shipment, and checking in with the warehouse staff. 

Best Practices for Implementing Technology Solutions

When considering new resources or processes within your business, you must follow certain best practices to ensure you don’t waste your investments. 


You aren’t likely to purchase a solution without first encountering a problem with your existing processes. But before you commit to a new system, take stock of your current issues and needs. Speak to workers and ask them where they experience delays or where they think workflows don’t make sense. Take stock of areas where work isn’t getting done or being done poorly. 

From there, you can find solutions that meet your specific needs and will help you solve those issues. 


With so many solution options for every need, it can be hard to wade through all of the noise and find the software that works best for you. A search engine is a good place to start, but if you were to Google a particular type of software, you’d likely get a laundry list of options. 

You can vet all of these yourself, sitting through demos and speaking to salespeople. You can also use a trusted review website like G2 or Capterra, which will give you a better idea of how actual users view the product. 


Once you have chosen your solution(s), set your teams up for success by ensuring everyone is properly trained on using it, as well as any new or altered workflows. Without proper training, you could face high turnover, errors, or accidents. 


It cannot be assumed that all of your problems will be solved by implementing a new solution. Once you have done so, continue to monitor its use and efficacy in order to maintain high levels of productivity. 

Looking Forward

Efficiency, security, and productivity in your warehouse are paramount to its success. By recognizing the bottlenecks and safety hazards in your operation, you can gain a better understanding of how to ensure everything continues to run smoothly.

To learn more, join our next product tour.

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