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Tips for Staffing and Retaining Warehouse Workers

In areas with a high density of warehouse facilities, there is often a decent amount of competition when it comes to attracting, recruiting, and retaining warehouse workers at all levels. Keeping a warehouse fully staffed is not always easy. A successful distribution company will thoroughly evaluate employee incentives, their ideal candidates, training processes, and more.

Our Tips for Staffing and Retaining Warehouse Workers Include:

  • Offer more than Monetary Incentives: Compensation is important, but the truth is that monetary incentives are only part of the retention strategy. A competitive salary, incentives such as productivity bonuses, paid time off, healthcare benefits, and a safe working environment are all key pieces to the salary package.
  • Provide Flexible Operating Hours/Shifts: Although the classic three-shift model for a 24-hour operation still exists and works well for some warehouse options, many are looking for a more flexible solution to keep workers content. A growing number of businesses have adopted the annualized hours model for maximum flexibility and advantage. Warehouse workers get paid the same amount every month, but the hours vary according to the amount of work each day. Therefore, they will work longer hours during seasonal or high-activity periods, but for the periods that experience low activity, workers are sent home as soon as the work is completed. This model significantly reduces the need for hiring part-time or contracted workers during the high-activity periods.
  • Create a Training Program and Define Career Paths: Think about the various training topics each employee needs to receive. Factor in a warehouse worker’s physical and mental capabilities, the degree of safety required for the job, and if there’s a need for cross-training. Are there language barriers that may require a bilingual employee or classes to learn a new language? These are just a few questions you’ll need to ask yourself regarding your training program analysis. Once you establish a well-defined training program for each job role, it’s easier to determine potential career paths and how a warehouse employee can move up within the warehouse job roles. Henry Ford said this about training: “The only worse thing than training your employees and having them leave is NOT training them and having them stay.”
  • Look to Millennials to Staff Your Warehouse: As Generation X (those born between 1965 to 1981) is getting older, we’re seeing more and more millennials (those born between 1982 and 2004) join the ranks of warehouse operations, but not without some opposition at first. A warehouse job isn’t typically a sought-after career path for millennials, so your distribution business’s first step is to introduce these individuals to the opportunities of a career in the industrial sector and within your company. Consider starting an apprenticeship program or coordinate your hiring intentions with local colleges and hiring agencies. As an increasing number of businesses attempt to combat labor shortage with automation, millennials are more in sync with technology and automated processes, therefore looking to this demographic to fill warehouse jobs could prove beneficial to your overall success.

In business for over 35 years, NSA has helped countless businesses within the distribution industry get the most out of their Enterprise Resource Planning (ERP) and has continually exceeded client expectations by providing the best service and support in the industry.

Discover more about our services and how we may be of assistance. Whether it’s supplying your company with an in-depth Business Optimization Review (BOR), configuring Infor’s CloudSuite Distribution (CSD) technology for your distribution business, or something else entirely – our NSA team has the grit and expertise to tackle your company’s unique warehouse challenges head-on.