Unlike any other industrial warehouse function, pharmaceutical industry warehouse management faces numerous hurdles in terms of being crucial and legally bound, due to the highly regulated nature of the pharmaceutical sector. This blog discusses the pharmaceutical warehouse and some of the important components.
A warehouse is a structure used for the commercial storage of products. Traders, manufacturers, transporters, and corporations involved in the import-export business, among others, use it. Every organization has distinct functions, as well as regulations and constraints on a warehouse, depending on its business. Because it deals with the treatment of humans and animals, the pharmaceutical industry is a highly regulated industry with all aspects being as minute as feasible. As a result, there are a lot of costs and facilities associated with managing a pharmaceutical warehouse.
From the time a raw material or finished product enters the warehouse until it is dispatched for production (in the case of raw materials) or sales (in the case of finished goods), the pharmaceutical warehouse must ensure that none of the materials are harmed in any way because they are to be consumed by living beings. The essential elements for efficient pharmaceutical warehouse management should always be safety, cleanliness, and efficiency.
When it comes to a pharmaceutical warehouse, there are a few key considerations. Among them are the following:
1. Goods Receipt (GR) Generation: A goods receipt is a document that is used to acknowledge the list of products on it. The creation of a GR is a time-consuming process in pharmaceutical procurement. It is one of the most time-consuming and crucial operations since the products enter the warehouse and are put in the appropriate location only when the GR has been approved. Because he is dealing with a highly regulated and safety-conscious firm, the employee in charge of creating the GR must ensure that everything regarding the raw material or packaging materials entering the warehouse is flawless and exact.
Everything is involved in the formation of GR, from inspecting the cleanliness of the conveyance to ensuring that the label claim fulfills the requirements provided to the warehouse by manufacturing. The vendor will be paid after the GR is generated, and the materials will be assigned to a specified storage space. Any difficulty with material acquisition should not be overlooked because it will result in the creation of excess and needless inventory.
As a result, GR is a function that should be undertaken by a skilled individual. He or she must have a thorough understanding of the standard operating procedure (SOP) so that they are aware of all tasks involved and when they should be completed, such as which materials require or contain additional paper work, which materials require more precautions, and the differences in procedure when procuring raw materials and packaging materials, among other things. As a result, proper GR production will aid in inventory management.
2. Storage methods and conditions: pharmaceutical warehousing materials must be stored efficiently because their physical and chemical features are determined by how well they are preserved. Categorization of materials that are often used, have low consumption, are undergoing testing, or have expired should be done effectively to avoid the dispensing of incorrect products. Temperature, humidity, and pressure are the most critical environmental characteristics in a pharmaceutical warehouse storage facility, and if they are not maintained correctly, the contents may degrade or be damaged. As a result, these metrics must be checked on a regular basis within the warehouse.
3. Material/goods dispensing: The word dispense literally means “to give forth.” Raw materials for production, samples for quality control, and final goods for sale should all be managed efficiently and without error. This is because every gram of raw material counts in the completed product, and no pharmaceutical company wants to jeopardize its inventory by distributing it in incorrect amounts, causing manufacturing issues. As a result, correct dispensing SOP, such as processes in the dispensing cubical, weighing, and dispensing method, must be followed.
Other considerations include:
• Air lock system: This helps to prevent cross-contamination in the warehouse during material and personnel movement, or between two processes in nearby regions. Airlock systems have been installed as a result of the importance of cleanliness. HVAC systems keep them safe (Heat, ventilation and air conditioning). They operate on the differential pressure gradient principle.
• Calibration of weighing apparatus: This may seem trivial, but it is critical since materials are weighed and despatched on a daily basis, either for manufacturing or for sale. Any small change in quantity can alter the overall makeup of the completed product, causing medicinal efficacy issues.
• Human discipline: This is critical for a successful warehouse operation. As a pharmaceutical company, precise gowning practices must constantly be followed to guarantee that staff do not bring contamination from outside into the warehouse, thus helping to keep it clean. SOPs must also be adhered to in order for all warehouse operations to be carried out correctly.
Metrics for the Warehouse
There are a few parameters that must be examined on a regular basis in order for the warehouse to function properly. Among them are the following:
• Inventory levels must be checked on a regular basis to determine the ratio of moving to non-moving products. This will aid in taking action on inventory that has been sitting for a long time, as well as keeping track of inventory disposed at the end of the fiscal year. For the warehouse to run smoothly, it needs to have an optimal inventory level.
• Inventory turnover refers to the number of times a material is utilized and replaced over the course of a given period of time. The inventory turnover ratio is derived by dividing total inventory by sales. The higher the ratio, the more efficient the warehouse will be.
• Warehouse conditions: To avoid losses due to inappropriate raw material storage, it is necessary to check the temperature and humidity levels of the materials on a daily basis.
• Allocation of raw materials: Appropriate material allocation within the warehouse should be made based on consumption, quality inspection, and expired products. This aids in the following:
1. Preventing the deterioration of specific materials as a result of carelessness.
2. Prevent existing material from being reordered.
3. Getting rid of unneeded lead time
As a result, a pharmaceutical warehouse is a highly regulated area of the pharmaceutical industry that must be validated on a regular basis to ensure that the materials used to make the final product, as well as the final product itself, which will be dispatched for the purpose of sale, are of the highest quality and meet the needs of the people.