6-Step Guide: Warehousing with Intelligence

Businesses searching for a total solution to fulfill their supply chain requirements can look to experienced 3PL and 4PL providers to design and implement logistics solutions customized to your needs: from production and warehousing, to distribution to the final customer. 

Follow these 6 steps to move your business from operational intelligence to overall systems intelligence, and to improve your warehousing and supply chain capabilities.

1. Scaling your business

As markets fluctuations occur, so do fluctuations in warehouse capacity. When building your business or managing performance in a difficult market, it’s vital to search for providers that offer:

  • Customized and specialized solutions
  • Cost-efficiencies combined with continuous improvement
  • Compliance

2. OPEX and warehouse compliance

Operational Excellence

Mitigate potential operational excellence delays with clear warehouse KPIs that cover time, cost, and performance. With a continuous improvement method in place, you can easily measure and identify warehouse performance opportunities supporting:


  • Inbound and outbound lead time performance
  • Inbound put-away efficiency


  • Inbound and outbound defect statistics
  • Inventory accuracy


  • Inbound and outbound picking volume
  • Outbound shipment volume

Space Utilization

  • Storage levels

Warehouse Compliance

A warehouse provider should regularly perform comprehensive compliance reviews to streamline processes and deliver risk management strategies. This will allow you to fulfill orders and meet DIFOT. Effective compliance checklists include:

  • Storage and racking methods
  • Contractor compliance
  • Operational efficiencies
  • Environmental impacts
  • Deadline with product
  • Specialized control methods

3. EDI and automation

Though limitations may exist for full-scale automation, cost, or IT requirements (a system that does not allow for EDI integration), you can still ensure that systems are aligned. Different levels of integration are possible: none (just email), flat file integration, macro file, and full EDI. With C.H. Robinson, businesses can provide information in the format they run, and we can work with data and convert it to work with our warehousing facilities.

4. Reporting and inventory management

Visibility is of the utmost importance to your business. It is vital to know what’s in the shed. Accuracy around data and information is critical for your continued success, and that relies on agreement between the warehouse system and your financial system.

Optimize fulfillment with real-time tracking on your inventory movements using Electronic Data Interchange (EDI). When discrepancies arise, thorough reporting helps you understand what issues are occurring so you can refine processes as needed.

5. Technology

From suppliers to storage to delivery, logistics management can be complex. Your business needs a provider that manages the details while delivering clear visibility to inventory at rest and on the move.

Backed by an advanced warehouse management system (WMS), C.H. Robinson offers contract logistics services that give you the real-time information you need to optimize traceability and profitability—all while seamlessly connecting with your enterprise resource planning (ERP), reporting, and logistic systems. With robust solutions and a seasoned team on your side, you can more easily streamline your supply chain for future success.

6. Extension of your team

When choosing a 3PL or 4PL partner, you need people you can rely on—an extension of your team. With C.H. Robinson, you have access to a global network of experts that acts as that extension, guaranteeing you additional bandwidth with consistent management.

If you're ready to improve your warehousing and overall supply chain performance, we’re here to help.