Warehousing industry in India needs innovative approach to achieve improved efficiency. Asim Behera explains more on the current scenario and the importance of advanced innovative warehousing solutions to meet the emerging demands.
Transforming from godowns to warehouses over time, warehouses have grown to become the backbone of the manufacturing and the service industry. In the old times, warehouses meant humongous spaces managed by a huge manpower. There have been businesses that have been solely dependent on managing warehouses. Today, the very nature of handling such spaces is changing.
With supply chain getting advanced and evolved over time, warehousing is on a continuous improvement process. Today, the amount of material handling demands use of automation instead of a large workforce to save on labour costs and on-time distribution.
Specially in the manufacturing industry, with lean manufacturing and lean inventory becoming the aim, having sophisticated material handling systems has become the need of the hour. Similarly, growing consumerism has led to ever-increasing amount of logistics handling in the service sector, for which proper warehousing stands crucial for effective growth.
Warehousing in India
The changing scenario: If we go through the past and the current scenario of Indian industry, we can specifically note some changes over the period of time. Demand for modern and sophisticated warehouses has witnessed a tremendous increase in India in the last few years because of influx of multinational companies as well as export-oriented companies who are ready to invest in the warehouse infrastructure.
Need for large scale warehousing or dedicated logistics parks is fast catching up in India as it is mostly fragmented and unorganised industry, dominated by many small players. Also, the role of warehouses has increased due to wider product range, emphasis on shorter lead times and constant changes in customer demand with changing dynamics of the country.
In a recent World Bank study, India has jumped 19 positions in the Logistics Performance Index (LPI) which means India is on the growth path as far as the logistics handling capacity is considered. Also, in 2017, India made the highest-ever jump to come within the top 100 countries in the 'Ease of Doing Business' index of the World Bank. This indicates that, India is preferred by the world leaders to set up their businesses keeping in view the ability India withholds.
Although India is on the path of technological advancement, it needs more efforts to be taken to be at par with the developed countries higher up the order. Out of the many fields, warehousing and logistics management is one such important field that needs attention. The greater investment opportunity in the warehousing sector will offer a better investment return and lead to the growth of business in India. The warehouse industry in India is growing at a rate of 10 per cent every year.
Considering the current scenario, the growth in Indian warehouse industry is led by various factors, prominent amongst them are: