Have you ever wondered how a 23,000 sq. ft. warehouse operates? Especially during the holiday blitz?
So have we.
And so we looked into it, and sure enough, it really is as interesting as you’d think.
The best way to describe our Socksmith warehouse is “meticulous.” It’s a finely tuned machine that always runs like clockwork. Sure, the Socksmith family is a group of wacky and wonderful individuals connected by a passion for self-expression, through fun socks. But our warehouse team is the backbone of our brand, and each shipment is lovingly packed by hand, from one sock lover to another.
To get a glimpse into how effectively our Socksmith warehouse functions, we managed to steal our warehouse manager, David Magbanua, away from his 3,259 holiday orders for a brief chat.
David is the quintessential pro’s pro, so we knew he’d give us the scoop on how and why our warehouse runs so incredibly well. Sure enough, he delivered. As always!
So put on your favorite Socksmith socks, put up your feet, and enjoy this sneak peek into how those crazy cool and comfy socks you’re wearing reached your feet.
And remember folks, life is way too short for boring socks!
Q. “How did you get into your role? What experience did you have prior to working with Socksmith?”
DM: “This is a long story, but I’ll make it short. I was the captain of my high school cross-country and track and field teams, which is where I developed my leadership and collaboration skills. I then studied Health Science in college and thought that would be my career path, but I took a chance on a different direction when I was introduced to Socksmith founders Ellen and Eric Gil. I started as a warehouse associate and worked my way up to managing the warehouse.”
Q. “How big is your team at the warehouse? What hours does everyone work?”
DM: “We have seven folks who work the full-time hours of 8:30-5:30, Monday through Friday.”
Q. “Positive company culture is critical to the success of any brand. How do you keep morale high, especially during difficult times like these?”
DM: “There are a few ways to keep morale high, even during the toughest of times. Caring about the needs of individuals, getting to know each team member, and enjoying time together outside of work help maintain a positive work environment. We consciously make an effort to hang out together as often as we can.”
Q. “What do you consider the three most important elements of a seamless warehouse operation?”
DM: “First, you need to have the right people. Finding the right people who care and love what they do is massively important. Next, working out the logistics of everything is essential. I work with our IT manager, Ricardo, who sets up a system for success and I tweak it a little to add character to fit everyone’s skill set. Finally, setting a high standard for hard work that encourages everyone to respect one another is key to the type of successful warehouse we have.”
Q. “Do you have internal goals you'd be willing to share? For example, when an order comes in, how fast do you anticipate getting it shipped out?”
DM: “We do our best to get orders out the same day they come in. I’d love for you to see us unload a container. On a good day (most days!), we can fulfill same-day orders that land in the system as late as 3 PM.”
Q. “How much has this warehouse grown during the past five years? Do you have any stats to show how much success there has been?”
DM: “We’ve already moved and upscaled twice since I started. Looking back from day one, I’m proud to say we’ve been able to grow and find success in my department.”
Q. “Do you have much room to grow as far as warehouse space is concerned?”
DM: “Yes. We can maximize the warehouse space by building taller racks. I hope we stay here a while.”
Q. “What have been the biggest challenges since the COVID pandemic hit?”
DM: “The biggest challenge has been implementing safety measures such as wearing masks, sanitizing everything, and doing temperature checks. We didn’t have to think about these things as much prior to COVID, but now it’s become a top priority and the foundation of our work. I’m blessed to have a team that’s passionate regarding what we do. It’s also been amazing to have Ellen and Eric, who make it clear they care for our health.”
Q. “Have you adopted any technologies that have helped the operation?”
DM: “We started our warehouse with manual picking, labor intensive receiving and shipping of products, and tedious inventory management. We’ve since upgraded to devices for picking, scanners for accuracy, forklifts, and stackers. We’ve even invested in warehouse shoes for the team!”
Q. “How do you measure the success of the warehouse operation?”
DM: “Everyone has their own story regarding Socksmith’s success, but there’s one common recipe that connects everyone: the joy of working with one another. For me, Socksmith is simply love and family.”
So there you have it, straight from the horse’s mouth.
The success of Socksmith’s warehouse is due to so much more than mere logistics. Listening to David, we were struck by how much he and the rest of the team genuinely cares for one another, as well as the craft itself.
Thanks to David and his warehouse team for always showing the type of care and concern that is a hallmark of everything we do here at Socksmith.
And thank you for reading!