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Choosing the right WMS for your business.
A good warehouse management system works like magic in the right hands. But with so many WMS out there, how do you go about deciding which one to use? Here's what you need to look for in a WMS when buying one:
This article is brought to you by 2nd Annual Warehousing and Inventory Optimization Conference. Download the agenda of the conference
The warehousing function today is riddled with external challenges the e-commerce revolution has effectively inverted the conventional warehousing operating model. As companies now seek to explore strategies to pull product to consumers and not just the retailers faster, technology plays the pivotal role in allowing them to do so. With the global economy still recovering, it is now more important then ever for warehousing operations to leverage on warehousing management systems (WMS) to boost their profitability. So how do you start looking for that perfect WMS? A good WMS will set a benchmark for your customer service and will go on to define your overall business performance. So, here are 5 qualities that you need to look for in a WMS:
1. Optimize operations: A good question to ask yourself when considering WMS solutions is “How well can this WMS streamline our business process?”. It is incredibly challenging for a company to track employees' productivity and a good WMS will provide you with unhindered visibility when it comes to tracking tasks performed by employees, thereby measuring your workforce's efficiency. A good WMS maximizes the things it can do for you while minimizing its reliance on your resources.
2. Accessibility: The easier a WMS is to use, the lesser time you would spend training your employees. Better user interface will ensure that all employees will be able to leverage the WMS functionality to the fullest.
While choosing a WMS, you need to look for coherent dropdown menus and descriptive help screens which enhance usability. Your WMS should allow for simplified data entry and report creation and accurate transaction tracking.
3. 360° Transaction management: One of the most important considerations when choosing a WMS is “does the WMS have a door to door management capacity?”. You want a WMS that offers transparent transaction tracking. It should give you explicit details for everything- products, employees and transactions – every step of the way. Having a powerful WMS will help you analyze employee efficiency and product movement effortlessly, thereby enabling you to make smarter hiring decisions and better product stocking.
4. Flexibility: Your WMS solution needs be adaptive, scalable with your organization's growth and meet future requirements. A sure shot way of ensuring that your WMS is built for the future is ascertaining how compatible it is with enterprise resource planning (ERP) solutions. Most companies change ERP's as the scale of their operations increase, hence it is crucial that your WMS is in tandem with the ERP's that you might use in the future. So what you are looking for in your WMS is seamless ERP integration.
5. ROI: 'Price is what you pay, value is what you get out of it'. Functionality, flexibility, integration, scalability, ease of use and customer support all come into play when you decide on a WMS. These factors will essentially define your WMS' value proposition. Don't get carried away by the appeal of lower upfront costs, remember that this might ultimately end up costing you more in the long run if the WMS is unable to keep up with your increasing operations scale. The overall value of a WMS solution is determined by its ability to do more for your business today.
Investing money and resources in a WMS is a significant decision, but choosing the right system creates opportunities you can only dream about now.
Univera is an international informatics company based out of Turkey that provides AD/DC (Automatic Defining/ Data Collecting) solutions which also includes WMS solutions. StokBar Panorama, the warehouse and manufacturing management system by Univera is one of the most competent applications in the market today. It boasts of an elite clientele with some of the world's largest brands including GSK, JTI, La Lorraine, L'Oreal, Mars, Nestle, Nivea, Reckitt Benckiser, SC Johnson, Turkish Do&Co, Vodafone using the Panorama platform. You could trace both potential and existing storage in your warehouse via StokBar Panorama that is integrated with IoT Technologies. Univera has partnered with Fleming's 2nd Annual Warehousing and Inventory Optimization workshop as the Bronze Sponsor.
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