Order processing includes five main steps from order placement to delivery — and sometimes continues on if a customer starts a return process. But what is actually happening while an order is processing? Here’s a breakdown of the typical workflow:
When the business receives a customer order, order details (including items, item quantities, shipping details and delivery addresses) are typically sent to an order management system. If the company has several fulfillment centers or warehouse locations, the OMS will automatically determine the appropriate warehouse location to ship from, based on the delivery address and item availability. This helps reduce transit times and delivery costs. In some instances, one order with multiple items may be fulfilled from several warehouse locations to ensure faster delivery. For example, if one fulfillment center does not stock a certain item or that item is out of stock, the customer may receive two shipments from two different locations so they do not have to wait for items to be re-stocked.
The process of collecting a specified quantity of items from inventory to satisfy customer orders. Order picking must be a highly controlled process because it directly influences the productivity of the overall order processing workflow — the sooner orders are accurately picked, the sooner they can be packed and shipped
The process of protectively packing items into appropriate shipping boxes. The packing process also includes weighing the packages and labeling them with recipients’ addresses and any necessary delivery instructions. Whether items are packed in custom packaging or plain corrugated shipping boxes, it’s important to prioritize dimensions and weights that can be easily handled and are cost-effective.