What are Warehouse Management Systems (WMS)
A warehouse management system (WMS) is designed to identify the operational process in existence in order to develop them to maximise efficiencies. The system facilitates the management, planning, organising and staffing of the warehouse materials and resources.
Each warehouse management system operates depending on the needs of the warehouse and provides tools and information for the management of the warehouse. In general, every warehouse performs four basic functions: receiving a product, storing it, picking and shipping it.
The implementation of a warehouse management system allows a company to increase its competitive advantage by reducing labour costs and increasing inventory record accuracy. It also offers the potential to manage inventory in real-time, providing timely information on orders, shipments and receipts.
Maximising the capacity of the warehouse itself can drive efficiencies that support the organisation of inventory in order to increase pick, pack and despatch processes so driving up profitability and customer satisfaction through improved service levels.
Steps to Successful Application
- Design a WMS for operational improvement.
- Manage risk, communications, and expectation.
- Develop a solid project plan to roll-out the WMS software.
- Prepare to deal with adversity by paying attention to facilities preparation.
- Build a knowledge base and perform training.
- Test the WMS.
- Produce documents to manage the system.
- Take control of the WMS launch.
What are the advantages of WMS?
- Improving stock movement and record accuracy in the warehouse.
- Investment in a computer based system can pay back in as little as 6 months.
- Implementation of an electronic WMS can significantly reduce paperwork.
What are the dis-advantages of WMS?
- Big data management is required to be effective.
- Software can be difficult to configure and manage.
- Regular maintenance of the WMS is required to be effective
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For addition reading on this topic visit Operations Management