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Kitting Services: A Key Element in Supply Chain Optimization

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In today’s world of globalized commerce, supply chain optimization has become essential for businesses to maintain a competitive edge. One key aspect of supply chain optimization is kitting services, which involves grouping various items into a single kit sold as a single package ready for immediate use. Kitting solutions are widely used in various industries to improve efficiency, reduce costs, and increase customer satisfaction.

In this blog, we will explore the benefits of kitting services and how they can help businesses optimize their supply chains. We will also discuss the various kitting fulfillment services available and how we can customize them to meet the unique needs of each business.

What’s Kitting?

Kitting is a popular form of crafting that involves the assembly of individual components into a complete product. It is often used in creating gifts, souvenirs, toys, and other items. The chief advantage of kitting is that it allows for quick and easy assembly since all of the components are provided in one package. Kitting also simplifies product packaging since each component does not need to be separately wrapped or shipped.

Why Is Kitting Important?

Kitting can help streamline operations for manufacturing companies by eliminating redundant steps in the packaging process. By bundling items together in one package, manufacturers can avoid separating or rearranging them later when they reach customers.

Another benefit of kitting is that it reduces inventory costs since all parts are pre-packaged and ready to ship out. This means less storage space needed to house spare parts, allowing businesses to save on overhead costs. 

Kitting also makes it easier for customers to find what they need quickly, as packages will display all contents included. This helps ensure customers get exactly what they want without confusion or ambiguity about what is included in their order.

As a process in order fulfillment that groups related items together to form a single package, it enhances shipping accuracy and efficiency by simplifying inventory management, reducing picking errors, and streamlining packing and shipping processes. With all components of an order grouped and packaged together, fulfillment centers can process orders more quickly and accurately. This helps customers receive their orders faster and more reliably than if items were shipped without being kitted first.

Storage Systems for Product Kitting Preparation

With preparing kits, there are several storage systems available. Each storage system has its unique features and benefits, and choosing the right one depends on the products being prepared, the desired level of organization, and the space.

One popular storage system for kit preparation is bin shelving. Bin shelving incorporates a series of shelves with open-front compartments or bins that allow for easy access to products. This system is ideal for small to medium-sized products and is commonly used for electronic parts, hardware, and small tools.

Another popular storage system is pallet racking. Pallet racking is a heavy-duty storage system ideal for large, bulky products requiring a lot of space. This system can store products on pallets or directly on the shelves. Pallet racking is commonly used for storing automotive parts, construction materials, and large appliances.

Drawer systems may be the best option for smaller products requiring a high level of organization. Drawer systems include a series of drawers that can be easily labeled and organized to provide quick and easy access to products. This system is commonly used for storing small electronic parts, jewelry, and medical supplies.

Besides these storage systems, automated storage and retrieval systems (AS/RS) can be used for kit preparation. AS/RS systems are computer-controlled systems that use robots to move and retrieve products. These systems are ideal for high-volume kit preparation and are commonly used in manufacturing and distribution centers.

Ultimately, the choice of storage system will depend on the specific needs of the kit preparation process. By choosing the right storage system, companies can improve the efficiency of their kit preparation process and ensure that products are ready for shipment promptly.

The Cost-Effective Automation of Kitting

Automated kitting systems use advanced technology, such as robots and automated guided vehicles (AGV), for the assembly and kitting process. Robots are used to pick and pack parts quickly and with precision, and AGVs are used to transport kits throughout the facility after they have been assembled. This ensures all components arrive at the right place and time without human error or delay. 

Using an automated kitting system can also help streamline inventory management and tracking processes by using barcode scanners to track items within the kit. This helps companies keep track of every component in a kit as they move through different stages of production. Automated kitting systems can be integrated with other technologies, like RFID tagging and vision systems, to provide even greater accuracy levels with inventory management. 

By automating the kitting process, businesses can significantly reduce their costs while ensuring that their products are completed accurately and on schedule. 

Benefits of Kitting

Kitting is grouping and organizing related items or components together to form a kit, which can then be easily accessed and used for a particular task or project. Here are some benefits of kitting:

More Efficient Use of Warehouse Space

It can provide more efficient use of warehouse space, as it allows for multiple items to be grouped together and stored in one area, thus reducing the amount of space each item would take up individually.

Fewer Errors

It can also reduce process errors, as it helps ensure that all necessary items are included in the kit and nothing is missing. This can prevent mistakes and rework that can be caused by missing components.

Lower Labor Costs

It is an effective way to optimize labor costs – it can reduce the time needed for tasks by up to 60%, leading to a substantial reduction in the labor costs associated with production.

Lower Shipping Costs

It has brought about significant cost savings by decimating shipping costs for businesses through bundling products into one unit, decreasing the number of orders and individual packages that need to be shipped. When items are kitted, it can lead to increased efficiency in the warehouse or distribution center because of reduced handling time.

Higher Sales Revenue

This is an effective way of enhancing customer satisfaction and boosting sales, as it allows businesses to offer customers more options for purchasing related items together at a discounted promotion rate. This can increase customer loyalty and higher sales revenue by encouraging customers to purchase more products in one transaction.

Faster Shipping

Kitting can soar shipping speeds since it combines multiple orders into one larger shipment and eliminates the need for multiple pickups, packaging, labeling, and other associated processes. Combining increases efficiency and allows for faster turnaround times.

How to Manage Kitting

Kitting is a great way to streamline production and increase efficiency, but managing the process is important to maximize its effectiveness.

Kitting Process

The kitting process typically involves the following steps:

Determine What the Kit Will Comprise

Before beginning the kitting process, it’s important to determine what items will be included in the kit and why. This helps ensure that the kit is tailored to its intended use.

Decide Who Will Assemble the Kit

Once the items have been selected, it’s important to determine who will assemble the kit. This may involve outsourcing the task to a third-party vendor or assigning it to a staff member.

Assign a New SKU

Assign each kitted item a unique SKU to be tracked easily in inventory management systems. This helps ensure accurate stock levels and reduces the risk of product shortages.

Organize the Items

The items included in the kit should be organized and labeled clearly to be easily located and used when needed. This helps reduce confusion and increase productivity.

Ship the Kits

It’s important to package and ship the kits so that they reach their destinations safely and on time. This helps ensure customer satisfaction and increases the chance of repeat business.

Warehouse Kitting with Inventory Management Software

Implementing kitting with inventory management software can be a powerful way to improve order tracking, stock management, and item assembly efficiencies while reducing the time and effort needed to manage the process.

WMS: An Essential Kitting Tool

With the help of Warehouse Management Systems (WMS), kitting processes are much more efficient and effective, decimating errors through streamlined management and organization of inventory, order fulfillment operations, and labor management.

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