Order Fulfilment Errors: Strategies for Eliminating them

Order fulfilment errors are common for logistics and supply chain businesses, especially those with huge customer demands.

Although order fulfilment errors are common, especially in Africa, they can harm the business’s reputation.

The causes of order fulfilment delays are quite similar to those of order fulfilment errors, but the strategies for tackling them differ slightly.

In this article, we will explore strategies for eliminating or minimizing errors in your order fulfilment process.

What are these strategies?


1. Integrate Tech Solutions

Technology is your secret weapon to enjoying a competitive edge in your supply chain, even for your fulfilment business.

In Africa, not every fulfilment business or supply chain has embraced this yet, which leads to slow fulfilment operations, and inadvertently, mistakes are bound to happen.

When your business embraces tech solutions, you can run processes within the business more efficiently and way more gallantly.

Tech solutions will also help you eliminate repetitive tasks such as your order processing, ultimately reducing mistakes or errors in your operations.

These solutions will also help speed up the process. Think about Amazon and their integration with Kiva in 2008. It reduced the company’s cost by 20% and shot its productivity by 50%.

2. Packaging, Labeling, and Slotting

Packaging and labelling are effective methods of reducing errors in your fulfilment process. In many cases, your employees could process the wrong order or the wrong product because of labelling and packaging challenges.

With the right labels and packaging, you could improve their productivity and reduce errors. Always pay attention to readability, colours, size, product description, and details when packaging and labelling.

They go a long way to eliminate order fulfilment errors.

Invest in packaging materials and use appropriate methods such as bubble wraps or packaging peanuts to make the most of the packaging process.

Slotting is a method of arranging inventory in the warehouse to maximize space and effectiveness throughout the warehouse.

However, when slotting, it is necessary to ensure order accessibility to reduce travel time. When products are challenging to come by in the warehouse or distribution centre, it can also lead to delays and errors.

3. Introduce Structure

Structure in your business goes a long way. It helps create processes that help make your business operations more productive.

Having a structured process for receiving, processing, and shipping orders will go a long way to eliminating errors because people tasked with these operations will always know what, when, and how to manage situations that may occur.

To introduce structure, you can create an order fulfilment policy or train your employees on how the structure works. You should take care to create a structure that your team can buy into.

When the structure is adaptable and easy to understand, they will be amenable to change and embrace the process quickly.

4. Communication

Communication is necessary for an effective supply chain and order fulfilment operation. It is the facilitation of information between all stakeholders in your business.

When communication is good between your team and stakeholders, information can flow correctly, which helps your team eliminate or reduce errors in your order fulfilment program.

For information to flow seamlessly in the fulfilment business, there have to be channels that facilitate this communication.

For instance, the customer’s orders must come in through certain channels. It could be through an application, telephone, or mail.

The information for processing should flow through certain channels as well, and the same thing applies to the fulfilment operation.

5. Outsourcing

Outsourcing is the process of leveraging industry experts to make a business or supply chain run smoothly. Businesses often outsource aspects of their supply chain, such as manufacturing, logistics, and warehouse.

The concept is not new and, in fact, is widely accepted across the globe. Major companies and industry leaders like Apple and Nike outsource their manufacturing and fulfilment programs to businesses in India and China.

It helps focus the business and reduce order fulfilment errors.

Outsourcing lets you focus on core processes while ensuring your other operations are in good hands.

Fast food or restaurant businesses are typical examples of businesses that outsource their fulfilment and delivery processes.

E-commerce businesses do this as well. It helps them focus on what they are good at while leaving the logistics headache to industry experts.

Considering that the model is cost-effective and reduces the workload on these businesses, it is not surprising that the logistics industry on the continent is rising steadily.

The industry, despite the infrastructural limitations on the continent, is valued in excess of 340 billion dollars. All things considered, this is not bad at all.