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How to Prepare Your Warehouse for the Holiday Season

Posted by: admin on October 21, 2022 - warehouse holiday prepThe holiday season is quickly approaching, and that means your warehouse is about to get a lot busier. Are you prepared for the influx of orders? In this post, we’ll share some tips on how to prepare your warehouse for the holiday season. Stay ahead of the curve and make sure your warehouse is ready for anything!

Check the Warehouse Layout

Is your warehouse ready for the holidays? There are few things that can make your holiday season more stressful and hectic than your warehouse being poorly organized for the holiday rush. You may want to carefully consider where you are storing popular holiday items, to ensure that your staff is not running all over your warehouse to fill orders. Keep holiday products close to packaging areas, so that orders can be filled quickly, and safely.

If possible, you may even want to start separating pedestrian traffic from forklift traffic. Isolating these groups can help keep everyone safer. If you can’t find a way to keep foot traffic and forklift traffic from overlapping, insist that everyone wear reflective safety vests to highlight their presence in the warehouse. This should go for everyone – employees, vendors, contractors and visitors must all do their part to minimize the risk of accidents.

Prepare with Plenty of Equipment

Learning how to prepare your warehouse for the holidays means anticipating potential shortages ahead of time. Don’t let a shortage of aerial lifts and forklifts slow your warehouse efficiency during the holidays. Make sure that you have plenty of the equipment you need. Many local equipment companies are prepared to rent warehouses the necessary equipment, at reasonable rates, during the holidays.

Service All Your Equipment

Eager to prepare your warehouse for the holiday season? Make sure that all of your forklifts, hand lifts and other essential warehouse equipment is serviced and in great condition before you head into the holiday season. Also make sure that all of your operators know how to properly check their equipment for issues.

OSHA provides a standard forklift maintenance checklist that can prove especially useful this time of year. Creating, maintaining, and updating your own checklist can help you keep up with ongoing maintenance required to keep lifts in good working order. This isn’t a step you’ll want to skip – poorly maintained equipment can lead to accidents, injuries, and OSHA violations. By staying ahead of the service requirements, you minimize the odds of these disruptions. 

Rely on Your Warehouse Management System

If you have a good warehouse management software program, the holiday season is the perfect time to make the most of its capabilities. Use historical trends to stock the most popular items well in advance. Then use your software system to ensure that all orders are filled and shipped in a timely manner. Most importantly, don’t change software systems right before the holidays. This is a sure way to create huge holiday problems.

Hire Plenty of Temporary Employees

Knowing how to prepare a warehouse for the holiday season often lies in talent acquisition. A shortage of good, trained employees is a surefire way to have a holiday season disaster. Fill temporary positions well before the holiday rush sets in. This enables you to get quality employees and get them trained on equipment, software, processes and safety procedures well before your warehouse is in a rush.

Put Safety First

Finally, but maybe most importantly, make sure that all of your employees are properly trained in safety procedures. This includes all of your long-term regular employees and temporary employees. Make sure they know proper equipment operation and understand the flow and traffic patterns of the warehouse. And, don’t forget to provide the proper personal protective equipment (PPE) to all employees. PPE can make the difference between a safe and productive warehouse and lost time due to injuries.

How to Handle Large Returns During the Holiday Season

The holiday season is a busy time for most warehouses. Not only are they dealing with an influx of orders, but they’re also dealing with an influx of returns. This can be a daunting task for any warehouse manager, but it’s important to know how to handle large returns so that your warehouse runs smoothly and efficiently. Here are a few tips on how to do just that.

Create a Return Policy Before the Holiday Season Begins

The first step in handling large returns is to create a return policy before the holiday season begins. This will help you keep track of returns and ensure that all returns are processed in a timely and efficient manner. Your return policy should include the following information:

  • What items can be returned? 
  • How long do customers have to return an item? 
  • What is the process for returning an item? 
  • Who pays for return shipping? 
  • What is your refund/exchange policy? 

By having a return policy in place, you’ll be able to better handle the influx of returns and keep your warehouse running smoothly.

Hire Additional Staff to Help With Returns

If you’re expecting a large number of returns, it’s important to hire additional staff to help with the process. Additional staff will help you process returns quickly and efficiently so that your warehouse runs smoothly. 

Set Up a Dedicated Returns Area in Your Warehouse

Another way to handle large returns is to set up a dedicated returns area in your warehouse. This area should be separate from your regular shipping and receiving area so that returns can be processed quickly and efficiently. By having a dedicated returns area, you can ensure that all returns are processed in a timely manner and that your warehouse runs smoothly.

Partner with This Holiday Season

Part of learning how to prepare a warehouse for the holiday season lies with finding outsourced partners like As you bring on more employees to beat the seasonal rush, you won’t want to skimp on training. By offering your team affordable, convenient training opportunities, you minimize the risk of accidents, injuries, and OSHA violations. 

Our online course can be completed in about an hour’s time. After that, employees will be OSHA-certified to operate forklifts. Most importantly, they’ll also be equipped with the safety tips they need to avoid workplace accidents. To learn more or to get started with CertifyMe, simply click here or dial 1-888-699-4800.

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