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Techniques of Order Picking for Warehouse Productivity

In a typical warehouse, order picking is the most manual, labor-intensive, and costly operation. It can account up to 60% of the operation costs. Companies tend to focus on this area first because various improvement can positively impact their customer’s experience. This means that warehouse picking involves workers picking items from cartons on warehouse shelves and placing them into boxes for shipment to customers. Picking requires great contract of coordination, organization, and thoroughness in order to move the pickers through warehouses smoothly for them to fill the maximum number of orders in the shortest time.

Warehouse managers frequently search for strategies to restructure the picking process because it can be time-consuming and costly if not done as efficiently to maximize productivity. However, they also feel pressured to enhance picking practices to meet and exceed customer expectations, as both picking speed and accuracy affect customer’s satisfactory.

There are several picking strategies for distribution center to boost their order picking performance and increase productivity. The picture below shows a typical warehouse that requires space to store products safely until they are shipped, as well as the need for an effective and accurate system to track inventory until it is finally delivered.


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Lim Yoon Chin, DLSM
Jean Lim Yoon Chin has substantive years of experiences in the field of production control planning, specifically in the technology sector. Jean is a member of the Singapore Institute of Purchasing and Materials Management (SIPMM) and completed the Diploma in Logistics and Supply Management (DLSM) course in March 2018 at SIPMM Institute.
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