Warehouse Manager

Most common questions and answers used to hire for jobs in Warehousing. We’ve compiled a list of the most common and frequently asked Warehouse Manager interview questions. If you want to ace your job interview, then checkout these Interview Questions.

Q.1 What are the objectives of EIA?
The objectives of EIA are: 1. To check the environmental acceptability of the proposals compared to the capacity of the site and the receiving environment. 2. To ensure that resources are used appropriately and efficiently. 3. To identify appropriate measures for mitigating the potential impacts of the proposal.
Q.2 How is cycle time computed?
Cycle time is the total time from the beginning to the end of your process. It is computed as : daily operating time divided by the desired output .
Q.3 Which order picking strategy involves products being picked from defined areas in the warehouse ?
Zone picking involves products being picked from defined areas in the warehouse. The area is divided into individual pick zones, and operators assigned there will only pick items within that zone. Products in a zone can be stored in flow racks or shelving.
Q.4 What is the major problem addressed by the warehouse layout strategy?
The major problem addressed by the warehouse layout strategy is addressing trade-offs between space and material handling .
Q.5 What is field warehouse?
A field warehouse is a facility established primarily to hold material serving as collateral for a loan.
Q.6 Can you describe some of the major responsibilities of a warehouse manager?
  • Warehouse managers are responsible for managing the warehouse in compliance with the company’s policies.
  • Secondly, they manage the receiving, warehousing, distribution, and maintenance operations.
  • Thirdly, they set up the layout and make sure that there is efficient space utilization.
  • Next, they begin, coordinate and enforce optimal operational policies and procedures.
  • Lastly, they control the stock control and reconcile with the data storage system as well as prepare the annual budget.
Q.7 Tell me how you have maintained efficiency throughout a warehouse in your previous role?
The efficiency of a warehouse is important to on-time shipments and customer satisfaction. In my previous workplace, I managed and improved the efficiency by 25 percent by integrating drone picking for anything bigger than the second tier of racking.
Q.8 Name some of the warehouse technology tools.
Some of the WMS tools include: Automated Inventory Control Platforms Warehouse Management Systems Internet of Things (IoT) Implementation Automated Picking Tools Automatic Guided Vehicles (AGVs) Collaborative Robots (Cobots) Automated Storage and Retrieval Systems (AS/RS)
Q.9 What modifications do you think to have in the warehouse industry in the coming years?
The warehouse industry emerging constantly. However, with the integration of the latest technology, the growth speed rate has become faster. As for the modification, it is important for the warehouse industry to have integration of automation and improvement of picking and packing times.
Q.10 Describe the process of controlling and managing the staff for a busier day.

Warehouses shift varies between busier and slower days. This totally depends on the season, new product orders or special discounts and sales.

  • The first thing is to track the busiest seasons in order for planning employees' shifts accordingly.
  • Secondly, schedule the team several weeks in advance and notify them about the extra working shifts for a few months before the holidays.
  • Thirdly, maintain an ongoing relationship with the sales and marketing teams for making sure that they notify me about all the upcoming products. This will help in scheduling the team ahead of time for preparing for this incoming flood of work.
Q.11 Explain the process of organizing the storage area for items in bulk.
The usual way for organizing this is by bulking items vertically or in a straight direction. This arrangement will help in piling the bulky items like containers over each other. Or we can organize a storage area by bulking it at an angle.
Q.12 What do you understand about anti-dumping duty?
Anti-dumping duty contains the import duty that is exploited in the case where the price of imported goods is less than the normal prices in the domestic market of the exporter. These cases can lead to the loss of material to the domestic industry of the importing nation.
Q.13 Describe the process of analyzing the logistics team performance.
The best way is to make use of the transport management system for tracking the time taken by the logistics team for examining drivers in and out. This provides a measure of their performance. However, to get better result, examine the performance by making weekly on-site observations.
Q.14 What do you understand about advance shipping notice (ASN)?
Advance Shipping Notice can be considered as notice containing the shipment information which is sent to the customer in advance of delivery. However, the notice contains the shipment and carrier-related information details like the time of departure and expected arrival time.
Q.15 Suppose you get a message from a supplier that there will be a delay in their Shipping. How will you handle this situation?
Delays can take place from time to time. However, from the very start, as a warehouse manager, I will make suppliers sign a document agreeing that they will offer a discount for any late shipment. This will help in covering the loss caused by the delay. Further, if the supplier continues to delay for a second or third time, then, it will result in terminating the services with them.
Q.16 What is the process of achieving maximum accuracy in inventory?

For getting the maximum accuracy, there are two procedure models:

  • Firstly, Stocktaking Procedure provides an appropriate basis for planning and stock control procedures. This helps in examining the level of stock losses inside the business.
  • Secondly, the Counting Procedure provides support in accounting for differences in-stock quantities.
Q.17 According to you what is the important thing in Warehouse Management?
Safety is very important in warehouse management. This comes with wearing PPEs and using protective equipment to ensuring the health of warehouse employees. Moreover, it is also important for paying attention to warning signals and signs while working in the warehouse. There must be rules outlining how things should be done for ensuring safety in the warehouse.
Q.18 Define Compliance Labels.
Compliance labels specify that a particular product complies with the standard set for that particular industry. These labels confirm that a product meets the specifications established by the applicable governing framework of the exporting or importing nations.
Q.19 Define Real-time Data Warehousing?
This is used for capturing the business data whenever it appears. However, after the completion of business activity, the data will be available in the flow and become available for use instantly.
Q.20 What are the applications of Data Warehouse?

Some applications are:

  • Firstly, financial services. 
  • Secondly, banking services.
  • Thirdly, customer goods.
  • Then, retail sectors.
  • Lastly, controlled manufacturing.
Q.21 What do you understand about the term “Breaking the bulk”?
Breaking the bulk can be considered as a warehouse operation similar to consolidation in which there is no execution of storage function. A break-bulk operation receives combined customer orders from manufacturers and ships them to individual customers. This function requires sorting or splitting of individual orders in a warehouse in order for arranging local delivery.
Q.22 Explain the process of Spot stocking.
Under spot stocking, a selected amount of a firm’s product line is put in a warehouse for filling customer orders during a critical marketing period. Rather than holding inventory in warehouse facilities on a year-round basis or shipping directly from manufacturing plants, delivery time can be substantially lowered by advanced inventory commitment to strategic markets. Further, the use of warehouse facilities for stock spotting helps in putting the inventories in a variety of markets.
Q.23 What is an Assortment?
Assortment operation helps to stock product combinations in anticipation of customer orders. The assortments may need multiple products from different manufacturers or special assortments as defined by customers.
Q.24 Can you describe the warehouse performs storage functions?

There are two types of storage actions performed,

  • Firstly, Planned Storage. This is needed as planned for meeting the regular customer demand.
  • Secondly, Extended Storage. This requires the storage of inventory in excess of normal warehouse operation. Some of the reasons for extended storage requirements are seasonal demand, erratic demand, discounts, speculative purchases, product conditioning, etc.
Q.25 How has your education helped you to prepare for a career as a Warehouse Manager/Supervisor?
In this question You should provide an overview of your highest level of completed education together with your schooling and degree received so far. Mention about any recent training seminars or conferences which are directly connected. You can refer how your education prepared you for multi-task, manage busy workload and helped you to prepare for complex team projects. Also state that your education has provided you with a good foundation, and also mention that there will still be things to learn once you are on the job.
Q.26 Can you describe the way for measuring performance?

The most common performance measures are:

  • Firstly, Handling productivity. This is often measured in units of lines picked per hour or total handling cost per unit.
  • Secondly, Space utilization. This is examined on the basis of the percentage of total space available for storage, percentage of useable storage space actually used for storage, and storage cost per unit of product.
  • Thirdly, Accuracy. This requires measures of location and record accuracy, the percentage of items picked correctly, and the percentage of orders picked correctly.
  • Then, Cycle time. This is a critical performance measure for determining service and efficiency where dock to stock cycle time is a critical measure of how long it takes to make material available following receipt and order cycle time measures the elapsed time from order receipt until order shipment.
  • Lastly, Cost and inventory. This is a performance measure that includes total distribution center cost per unit handled, distribution center cost as a percentage of sales, and inventory turnover.
Q.27 How much experience do you have in supervising?
It is suggested to be open and honest with the interviewer by sharing the supervising experience you have. Like if you have experience with interviewing, making hiring decisions, writing performance reviews, mentoring, coaching, etc but just be sure to mention everything in your bouquet. Your answer will assist the interviewer understand the type of training required to be successful in the role.
Q.28 What are the challenges faced by a warehouse manager?
  • Firstly, warehouse managers are pressurized for decreasing the costs to survive the competition in the industry.
  • Secondly, one of the recent key performance indicators (KPI) introduced into the supply chain is the perfect order metric. A perfect order is deemed to be one that has been delivered on time. Thus, one of the major challenges of the manager is to achieve the perfect order.
  • Thirdly, overstocking or understocking can be dangerous, thus it is important to make frequent small orders as to when the inventory is required so as to decrease wastage and costs. After that, a warehouse manager must find ways to get hold of the staff which may be done by providing healthy working conditions and flexible working hours.
  • Lastly, Some of the environmental issues that can occur are energy consumption, affecting items such as lighting, mechanical handling equipment, and heating.
Q.29 What is the primary role of a warehouse manager according to you?
The primary role and responsibilities of a Warehouse Manager is smooth functioning of a warehouse. This may involve doing inventory, maintaining the facility’s equipment, and ensuring efficient dispatch of products from the warehouse. Also a warehouse manager in charge of hiring, scheduling, coaching and monitoring warehouse assistants and other staff of the organization.
Q.30 Explain the warehouse design criteria.

Warehouse design criteria address physical facility characteristics and product movement. The important factors for the design process are:

  • Firstly, the number of stories in the facility
  • Secondly, height utilization
  • Thirdly, product flow
  • Lastly, the number of stories in the Facility
Q.31 What are the required skills and knowledge of warehouse management?
Some of the commonly required skills and knowledge in warehouse management includes knowledge of operating a forklift, handling hazardous materials, and awareness of Department of Transportation requirements. The task might require more specific hard skills such as HAACP/GMP/GDP etc. Now it is the hiring managers decision to go for industry knowledge or experience in warehouse management,
Q.32 What is Movement continuity?
Movement continuity means that it is better for a material handler or piece of handling equipment for making a longer move than to have a number of handlers make numerous, individual, short segments of the same move. However, exchanging the product between handlers or moving it from one piece of equipment to another wastes time and increases the potential for damage. Thus, as a general rule, fewer longer movements in the warehouse are preferred.
Q.33 What are the challenges you are looking for in this position?
This question is asked to determine what you are looking for in the next job and whether you are a good fit for the position being hired for. The best way to answer this question is to discuss about the challenges you are seeking and how you will be able to effectively utilize skills and experience if you are hired for the job. Also you should mention that you are motivated by challenges and have skills necessary to handle a challenging job. You can also describe specific examples of the challenges you have met and goals achieved in the past.
Q.34 Name the various types of warehouses.

1. Private warehouses - This facility is owned and managed by the same enterprise that owns the merchandise handled and stored at the facility.

2. Public warehouses - This is operated as an independent business offering a range of services such as storage, handling, and transportation on the basis of a fixed or variable fee. These warehouses generally offer relatively standardized services to all clients.

3. Contract warehouses - This has evolved from the public warehouse segment and provides benefits of both the private and public alternatives. Contract warehousing is a long-term, mutually beneficial arrangement that provides unique and specially tailored warehousing and logistics services exclusively to one client, where the vendor and client share the risks associated with the operation.

Q.35 What do you understand about factor rating?
Factor rating is a means of allocating quantitative values to all the factors related to every decision option and then getting a score for examining which option is suitable. In this way right priorities are kept in mind and constraints are also ruled out.
Q.36 What is the procedure for qualitative factor rating?
  • Firstly, lineate a list of relevant factors linked with selecting a warehouse.
  • Secondly, allocating a weight to each factor to indicate its relative importance.
  • Then, assigning a common scale to each factor (ex 0-100 points) and designate any minimum.
  • After that, scoring every potential location according to the designated scale, and multiply the scores by the weights.
  • Lastly, the total the points for each location, and choose the location with the maximum points.
Q.37 What things are to be considered before finalizing the location of a warehouse?

Some of the considerations determine the location of a warehouse

  • Firstly, this must be a market service area and cost of distribution from the warehouse to the market service area.
  • Secondly, availability of transport requirements and facilities in the form of rail, link roads, and road vehicles.
  • Thirdly, checking for competition by rival companies and whether they have warehouses in the same area.
  • Next, availability of power, water, gas sewage disposal, and their cost.
  • Then, labor supply and labor costs in the area.
  • After that, check for restrictions associated with warehouses.
  • Lastly, the cost of land for the warehouse and other costs.
Q.38 Explain the various methods for handling goods in the warehouse.

Various methods of handling goods are,

  • Manual handling - Manually operated trucks and trolleys
  • Powered trucks and tractors, operator-controlled and driven
  • Powered trucks and trolleys, driverless, computer-controlled
  • Crane systems
  • Conveyors
  • Robotics
Q.39 What are the main attributes of security inside a warehouse?

The core attributes of security within a warehouse are as follows,

  • Firstly, appropriate recording of inbound and outbound products
  • Secondly, authorizations for all dispatches
  • Thirdly, accurate audit trails
  • Then, regular stock checks
  • Lastly, the use of appropriate storage equipment
Q.40 What are things to consider when using a third-party contractor?
When third-party contractors are used for transportation, there are many things to be taken care of in the loading process. That is to say, some companies insist on the driver assisting with the loading and validating the contents of the load, while other companies have health and safety issues with external staff being on the loading bay. Further, a time limit needs to be agreed upon in terms of how long the collecting company has to report any discrepancies. If the vehicle is sealed, the seal number needs to be recorded on the delivery.
Q.41 What are the advantages of the Warehouse management system?
  • A WMS can process data more quickly and can coordinate movements within the warehouse.
  • Secondly, it can produce reports and handle large volumes of transactions as experienced in e-commerce operations.
  • Thirdly, the introduction of new technologies in WMS operations not only improves your competitiveness in a challenging market but can also be instrumental in meeting ever-increasing customer demands.
  • Lastly, WMS is an invaluable tool for improving an organization’s productivity and customer focus.
Q.42 Define Software as a service (SaaS) WMS.

This refers to is an internet-based application that is developed, hosted, and maintained by a third-party software provider on secure servers. The vendor rents out the system to a number of different clients. Those clients in turn will select the various modules inside the software they require and pay for them as they use them. The advantages of SaaS WMS are:

  • Firstly, lower cost of entry
  • Secondly, reduced start-up costs
  • Thirdly, instant upgrades
  • Then, user-driven innovation
  • Lastly, the ability to turn on and off as required, eg to run a temporary warehouse operation
Q.43 Explain the various phase of Warehouse design.

There are three phases,

1. Pre-Engineering It is important to identify the strategy of the company, both short and long term. It could be a storage facility, or a cross-docking facility, or a reverse logistics depot.

2. Conceptual design After the total storage space, one can decide how big this facility needs to be, and how much will it cost.

3. Layout planning This includes the layout design, how much manpower is required. Then begin with the investment and the analysis of the operating costs of the different alternatives.

Q.44 Define pallet.
A pallet can be considered as a portable platform, with or without super-structure, for the assembly of a number of goods to form a unit load for handling and storage by mechanical means. They are widely used for the storage and transit of goods.
Q.45 Name the most used pallets in warehouses.
Flat pallets, post pallets, and box pallets are the most common types of pallets used in warehouses.
Q.46 I want to calculate the cost, what type of expenses should I use?

There are generally three types of expenses involved while calculating the costs.

  • Firstly, General Overhead Cost. This contains the cost of space per cubic square foot. It may further include rent or mortgage, property taxes and utilities. General Overhead Costs also comprise the cost of racks, tables, and other equipment used in staging areas.
  • Secondly, delivery cost. This cost includes freight charges from outside vendors. These costs may also include the cost of gas, the insurance, and the cost of the delivery trucks. These rates are subject to the time involved in negotiating rates and selecting vendors, as well as the time to prepare shipping documents.
  • Lastly, the labor cost. This involves the receiving of incoming goods, including entering the relevant data into the computer and assigning warehouse positions. It includes the time taken to move goods from shipping to pallet positions.
Q.47 What is outsourcing?
Outsourcing can be defined as contracting out of an internal business process to a third-party organization. When some process is not the organization’s core competence, getting a specialist to run it more efficiently is outsourcing. The specialist benefits from its specialized knowledge in the field and economies of scale to lower the costs. The warehousing operates on either a dedicated or shared-use basis.
Q.48 What are the parameters to check while deciding on the third-party contractor?

The parameters to be considered are: Range of services: If one contractor provides various services then it is better to hire one party for all functions.

  • Market experience: A contractor might be old in the industry and know the tactics of the trade.
  • Quality of management: The products that are being stored should be taken care of and not mishandled.
  • Health and safety records: The tools and machines managing the consignment should be of the latest and high on technology and value for ensuring safety.
  • Strategy: Though an outsourcing partner is the best in the field but is located very far from the company, then it is not advisable to hire it.
  • Financial Stability: The partner should deliver at a time and should show financial stability to carry out the required tasks.
  • Shared user / public warehouses: It is important to find out which services, the partner is providing.
Q.49 Define Environmental Impact Assessment (EIA).
This is a tool used for identifying the environmental, social, and economic impacts of a project prior to decision-making. It aims to predict environmental impacts at an early stage in project planning and design, find ways and means to reduce adverse impacts, shape projects to suit the local environment and present the predictions and options to decision-makers. By using EIA both environmental and economic benefits can be achieved, such as reduced cost and time of project implementation and design, avoided treatment/clean-up costs, and impacts of laws and regulations.
Q.50 Define Base Lining and its method.

Baselining refers to a metrics system in which the present performance of the organization is compared with historical metrics. The baseline represents the organization’s performance in terms of schedule, the effort involved, and defects. The method of baselining is:

  • Firstly, start the project. For estimating the project effort and for planning reviews and testing.
  • Secondly, During the project. For determining whether a corrective measure is required.
  • Lastly, End of the project. For identifying if the project was doing something good which should be institutionalized.
  • And, further, for identifying whether the project was missing something which should be done on a similar project in the future.
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