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Question answered in Quora - What is the efficient Layout, Process & Put away/Picking Strategy i

The best way to do this is classify your SKUs by velocity, otherwise called as SKU Velocity. The SKUs that sell fast and a lot in quantity will be your high SKU Velocity SKUs, which let us call A, then comes B, they sell less fast than A Velocity SKUs and then comes C, the slowest selling SKUs. Classify all your SKUs into SKU Velocity A SKUs, SKU Velocity B SKUs and SKU Velocity C SKUs. And typically a best of the breed WMS has this ability to automatically record SKU Velocity based on the quantity sold. If you don't have this data then you need to go back to the sales history for the past one year or so.

Then for picking purposes group your locations based on proximity to your shipping dock, meaning the pickers will have to walk less distance to do these picks. They will be the locations holding the Fast Moving SKUs, so in an aggregate the pickers are walking the least to make these picks, let us call them locations X, then comes locations that are Y, they are Medium moving Locations, then come locations that are Z, they are the Slow Moving Locations, you want these locations far off from the shipping dock in the deep inside of the Warehouse/Distribution Center. So now locate all your Fast Moving SKUs with SKU Velocity A into X locations, then SKU Velocity B SKUs into Y Locations and SKU Velocity C SKUs into Z locations.

Do the same thing for Putaway as well.

Also there may be changing business scenarios and seasonal SKUs, you need to account for that. For Seasonals that are fast moving typically you cordon off a corner of the warehouse, locate everything there and then pick everything from there, you probably have to do this for a few months, let us say 2 to 3 months, then empty that space and use it for something else.

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Puga Sankara is the co-founder of Smart Gladiator LLC. Smart Gladiator designs, builds, and delivers market-leading mobile technology consisting of Smart Gladiator Wearable Scanguns, Tablets, Mobile Tech & Apps for retailers, distributors, and 3PL service providers. So far, Smart Gladiator Wearables have been used to ship, receive, and scan more than 100 million boxes. Users love them for the lightweight, easy-to-use soft overlay keyboard, texting&video chatting ability, data collection ability etc. Puga is a supply chain technology professional with more than 17 years of experience in deploying capabilities in the logistics and supply chain domain. His prior roles involved managing complicated mission-critical programs driving revenue numbers, rolling out a multitude of capabilities involving more than a dozen systems, and managing a team of 30 to 50 personnel across multiple disciplines and departments in large corporations such as Hewlett Packard. He has deployed WMS for more than 30 distribution centers in his role as a senior manager with Manhattan Associates. He has also performed process analysis walk-throughs for more than 50 distribution centers for WMS process design and performance analysis review, optimizing processes for better productivity and visibility through the supply chain. Size of these DCs varied from 150,000 to 1.2 million SQFT. Puga Sankara has an MBA from Georgia Tech. He can be reached at or visit the company at Also follow him at

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