2020 didn’t leave us with perfect vision, as everyone had anticipated at this time last year. It was memorable, alright, but most people will remember it as the year of the Great COVID pandemic, fluctuating stock markets, divisive politics and social unrest. We can’t wait to get to another year that will be much more positive for our families and businesses. There are a few things that we might want to think about carrying into 2021 with confidence.
Here are five things from 2020 that positively impacted warehousing:
- Growth trend – The warehousing industry was one of the few to maintain its presence and increase business significantly. Because people were isolated to their homes, internet traffic exploded, especially online shopping and electronic retailing. These retailers required more inventory and faster shipments. The industry stepped up. New systems and storage solutions were the first order of business. More product coming into your warehouse means more equipment, in pallets, rack systems and shelving. Everything Warehouse was fortunate to be able to help some of our current customers to expand and outfit our new customers with cost-effective storage solutions.
- Cleanliness – While the thought of bleaching another floor or disinfecting another table is not exciting, the cleanliness requirements of the COVID-19 pandemic have now become a habit for many employees. They are more conscious of their business surroundings, they don’t tolerate even normal daily dust or litter in aisles or among pallets. We’re seeing a consistently cleaner, fresher environment.
- Teamwork – Because employees of many companies were relegated to working at home and essential businesses had to make do with skeleton crews, a sense of camaraderie was built when people who don’t normally interact solved problems together. Teams became more cohesive and goals became more motivational. The attitude of “We’re all in this together” really did resonate with employees. Add a few friendly competitions for fulfillment groups, and one can just imagine the commitment these employees developed for their company.
- Customer Service – Every business owner was worried about weathering this storm. While many of them didn’t, just as many did. How? Careful attention to customer service. Those who great customer service throughout this time were the survivors. They checked in on their customers, they helped in the community. They kept in touch with their customers through email, phone and text. They devised shipping plans that would deliver quicker than estimated. They kept their customers’ trust.
- Technology – From Zoom meetings to warehouse management systems, technology has justified its presence and is demanding to be heard in every business sector. It’s not going away. 2020 forced us to face it and learn it. If we were to survive as businesses, we had to embrace the video meetings, electronic product scanning and online delivery systems. More employees are engaged in technology, and more people know how to use it than ever before.
You see, every cloud has a silver lining – you just have to search for it a little longer.