What to consider when Implementing a Warehouse Management System
When it comes to implementing a Warehouse Management System, there are a few factors to put into consideration. One of the main concerns for businesses is Return on Investment (ROI) and how long will it take to gain the payback. This is due to each WMS has different features, the ROI will be different for every WMS package. In addition, there are many features that you may not be able to associate an exact dollar value improvement.
Looking into a WMS system should include first looking at the existing processes. In doing so, you must identify the problems with the existing system and a specific cost associate with it. That will make it easier to tie a payback to specific processes. Below are some key areas for improvement.
Improving warehouse layout
An optimized warehouse layout can increase the capacity of the warehouse to store more goods without increasing costs by acquiring more warehouse space. An optimized warehouse layout will also allow for the faster processing of orders, which can produce more revenue for a company without increasing staff. In addition, it can help with finding products and ensuring the right products are picked, eliminating stock outs and costly shipping errors. Some of the other benefits include pick, pack and ship coordination; Locations for secure placement of some goods; and Free space for movement and other uses.
Visibility and Traceability
A WMS will give management traceability to product stocking, items shipped, and employee movement. The technology used provides login details and time stamps all steps. It includes the product and locations in the database. Barcode and RFID scanners validate each product that is touched.
There are a variety of different ways to pick products in order to maximize efficiency such as Zone Picking, Wave Picking, and Batch Picking. Management needs the flexibility that a WMS provides to determine the best method based on the employees, layout, customer needs, shipping times, order sizes and products. Each method can save time and money under the right circumstances.
After picking, the flow of goods out the door must continue in a speedy efficient manner. Proper kitting, labeling, boxing, skidding, courier selection and invoicing are required. These steps can be organized in the WMS and coordinated with a Transportation Management System (TMS). In addition, all information needs to be transferred to a company’s business software or ERP for accounting and prompt billing. Shipping within a warehouse is not when a package leaves the premises.
Faster New Employee Training
When it comes to staff using a WMS, the systems need to conform to the needs of employees and management. Screens should be designed to give employees easy instructions to perform their tasks. Barcode and RFID technology is reduce the potential for errors. Management can monitor the productivity of each employee to identify areas that need improvement. A WMS should make it easier to increase staff quickly when demands rise.
A WMS is a tool to not only improve your overall operations but to save money in the long term and achieve a fast ROI. It is essential for businesses who are going through the process of research for a WMS to consider a company that is flexible to help with the growth of the company for the future.
ProVision Warehouse Management System is a versatile solution that provides the tools to management in order to co-ordinate order fulfilment, provide excellent customer service, track labor output and improve decision-making. ProVision WMS is built for small to medium sized companies in North America to improve their warehouse operations. Request an online demo today.