Warehouse Management System: Introduction and Benefits
What do you visualize when the term ‘Warehouse’ drops in your ears?
Maybe a huge room occupied with stacks of boxes arranged on numerous racks, and sometimes a few robots & machines. This huge room and these racks are an inevitable part of a myriad range of industries, including retail, manufacturing, agriculture, FMCG, etc.
On top of that, warehouses are inordinately complicated to manage. Some organizations manage their warehouses by putting traditional methods in use. But as the world is moving rapidly towards technology, numerous smart companies are leveraging software for managing their warehouses. In fact, 96% of industry leaders identify innovation as ‘extremely important’ to growth.
If you are among those few hard workers, I appreciate the effort you put to pull it off. But if you are among other numerous smart companies, congratulations savvies! You have tapped into the unexplored growth opportunities and many more are on the way for you.
Most of us might already know what is a Warehouse Management System or WMS, but for those who do not have clear idea, I am explaining it here.
What does it mean by Warehouse Management System?
WMS is a software system that automates the daily processes in your warehouse. It controls the staff working in the warehouse, equipment, orders, and inventory.
Why is WMS imperative? Why numerous companies are going forward and getting WMS system implemented? A few of the major reasons are automation, cost-cutting, and human error. We as humans are more prone to make mistakes than computer software. That’s why around 62% of professionals says that human error is one the key reasons for discrepancy in inventory fulfillment.
This is one of the reasons behind a sharp spike in the demand for WMS in the recent years.
Some of the key challenges faced by the industry today are as follows.
- No or less synchronized storage capacities and goods’ inflow
- Inadequate demand and supply of quality in modern warehouses
- Underutilization of infrastructure and capacity
- Lack of required warehouse automation
It is generally observed that movement of companies from paper-based warehouse system to automation increases the company’s productivity by 25% and infrastructure utilization by 10-20%.
Of the various types of software designed to streamline warehousing operations, most companies (67%) rely on WMS
- A spike in the need for warehouse management solutions, investment by retailers has seen a surge by 25%.
- Almost 46% of warehouses deal with human error.
- Around 7% of small businesses ignore tracking inventory and then fall behind in many aspects.
Importance of WMS
Inventory Control and Management
Warehouse Management System reflects good results on your inventory control and management processes. It reduces order cycle time and enhances order fulfillment for augmenting your warehouse processes. Designed to handle and streamline your warehouse activities, warehouse management system helps you in tracking down every detail at each level for better inventory accuracy and advanced order fulfillment.
Let’s have a look at how WMS is important in handling warehouse processes.
1. Operating Expenses
An advanced WMS helps in cost reduction by optimizing space utilization, labor use, and waste reduction. You can decide and track positions of certain products in your warehouse. Some WMS come with warehouse floor simulators for planning the placement of all the products. Better utilization of space helps in accommodating more material in less space.
2. Inventory Visibility
A powerful WMS delivers real-time data from your inventory through serial numbers, RFID tagging, and bar coding. You can document every product entering the warehouse with these methods and track the movement of products on all the warehouse floors. Not just this, you also get to track the movement of product from one location to another while transporting it.
3. Customer Service and TrackingIf you know it or not, but warehouse has a significant contribution in enhancing customers’ buying experience. When someone orders products through your business, they have to be in stock at that moment so that you can fulfill the order. WMS automation augments picking accuracy for the correct orders to be available at the first time only. You can easily manage shipment routes, worker assignments, and put ways using warehouse management system for better customer service.
4. Billing Management
Warehouse management system comes with built-in billing management tools. You can also integrate third-party billing management tool app to leverage this capability. You can manage billing process based on the activities done related to every supplier. It also processes credit card payments and generates proper bills for every payment.
5. Company Productivity
When your company is dealing with productivity issues, your warehouse has a major part to play. WMS helps in smooth movement of goods through warehouse at the maximum speed, resulting in enhanced consistency, better efficiency, and managed quality control at every stage of the fulfillment process. Streamlined warehouse process hands over the right product to the workers at the right time, which, in turn, generates more work, means added productivity.
6. Return on Investment
Warehouse management system not only increases productivity, but also gives more sales and profits. It enables you to sell faster and accurate products to the customers in the least time possible. Finding the right product at the right place makes it easier for workers to pick more items in less time. This result in fewer complaints, better customer support, fast deliveries, and enhanced customer experience, ultimately turning into more sales.
7. ERP Integration
One of the features that you must see before considering any WMS is if it seamlessly integrates with your existing ERP system. You might receive orders via ERP and at the same time, your WMS must be able to communicate with ERP to plan picking, packing, and shipping. After this, WMS needs to send these details back to ERP. ERP-WMS integration is important to eradicate replication of systems and procedures.
8. Compliance Regulations
Businesses already have to face with new challenges every day. Meeting customer demands, aligning with government regulations, managing supply chain, everything has to be done concurrently. WMS helps in staying compliant with government regulations, automating businesses, and tracking data in real-time.
Key Benefits of WMS
- Minimize human error and handling time
- Raise labor productivity
- Accentuate operational efficiency
- Enhance fulfillment accuracy and fill rates
- Improve space utilization
- Improve communication among all the channels
- Allow real-time tracking of inventory
- Reduce cost and waste
- Make ready for seasonal demands in advance
There are multitudes of other benefits a WMS system can offer. The list can go on longer. If you are looking for the best WMS system in the market, AGSuite Technologies can help. We have cloud-WMS along with NetSuite ERP or you can also get WMS as a standalone product.