Handling the complex tasks within the supply chain can be challenging. To simplify and optimize different warehouse functions, businesses are increasingly recognizing the significance of Warehouse Management System (WMS) for efficient operations, which incorporate inventory balance, material management, pickup process and auditing.
The warehouse management system is fundamentally a software application that incorporates a broader spectrum of actions that begin from auditing and monitoring materials from the time received into a particular warehouse to being stockpiled and, finally, reaching the end-customer as the final step of the supply chain process.
Tracking Stock: WMS helps warehouse management teams track the demand versus supply of goods so that the right amount of stock can be replenished at the right time.
Picking & Shipping: WMS enables picking and shipping inventory to the right customer, reducing the chance of incurring costs due to mispicks and returns.
Tracking & Visibility: WMS permits easy tracking of inventory and order-related information such as serial numbers, expiration dates, UPC codes, etc.
Paperless Documentation: WMS reduces paper-based inventory documentation such as packing lists which can now be electronically maintained.
Improved Customer Service: WMS has proven to be a great tool to ensure customer satisfaction for existing customers while converting new leads into loyal customers.
Reporting & Analytics: WMS helps record inflow and outflow of inventory efficiently.
A stand-alone warehouse management system can be deployed on the native hardware (internal servers) as well as on the cloud. Most WMS systems are considered as third-party stand-alone packages that must be combined with the rest of your crucial business management software (such as ERP). When choosing a WMS, consider integration challenges such as information delays and silos, duplicate data entry, interface issues and customization costs. Also evaluate how the WMS will integrate with existing systems.
While thinking about various sorts of WMS frameworks, you may consider them a subcategory of supply chain management (SCM). Supply chain management software has a wide scope – it enables users to deal with everything from vendor relationships to business processes to risk assessment with a primary focus on material sourcing, inventory management, and product cycles. This type of warehouse management system requires investing in supply chain planning applications that offer additional warehousing features and is a popular choice because it provides businesses a myriad of SCM advantages. Integrating WMS with different applications ensures cohesion between various parts of the business and supports complete management of the entire supply chain versus stand-alone solutions which address warehousing only.
ERP is a powerful and valuable software solution that merges the competencies of many systems. It provides a majority of the core applications that make 3PL cycles go easily: from supply chain planning, customer relationship management, accounting, HR, and so on. ERP is a great alternative for businesses wanting to upgrade their software solutions, achieve a competitive edge, and boost ROI. These specialized systems provide reliable supply chain execution as well as scalability.
Integrated ERP systems also provide warehouse management features, however, it’s not a basic function of ERP. When looking for ERP software, make it also provides features for warehouse management. This sort of warehouse management system is available with a bigger price tag and is viewed as the jack of all trades of software. Given this broad scope, ERP can be used in place of other software applications and can streamline operations into a single interface.
Now that you are equipped with knowledge of the various alternatives of warehouse management systems, the time has come to determine what exactly your warehouse needs. While choosing your WMS software, the main goal is to see how it can help plan for your future growth.
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