Today’s competitive marketplace demands digital optimisation at all levels. This means that businesses that can operate efficiently have a significant advantage over their competitors, plus with the advancement of AI, applying technology into business is more important than ever.
As a warehouse business your WMS system is essential for your future success. Just look at warehouses Amazon is building, all automated, and built for efficiency and speed.
Like Amazon, we can optimise our warehouse management system functions and stay competitive in our niche in 2023.
Let’s take a deeper look at the key functions of a WMS system.
Warehouse Management System functions to optimise your business
A good WMS system focuses on optimising the basic functions of a warehouse, and should offer additional software features. The best WMS systems we came across are robust and easy to use.
These are some of the key warehouse management system functions you should look for:
- Inventory tracking: A good WMS can track the movement of inventory in and out of the warehouse. This will help you keep track of factors such as quantity, location, status, and other attributes of each item. This is necessary to optimise inventory levels, prevent stockouts, and track the delivery of orders.
- Order fulfillment: Your WMS can help automate the order fulfillment process, in all its phases while helping to improve efficiency and delivery time.
- Warehouse layout planning: A great WMS can help optimise the layout of a warehouse by considering factors like the type of products being stored, the typical flow of goods, and the space available. This helps improve the overall efficiency of the warehouse.
- Labor management: A WMS can even help manage the workload of warehouse employees and calculate labour for future work. It can track hours, tasks, and general productivity, helping a business improve scheduling, optimise task allocation, and identify training needs.
- Reporting: A dependable WMS can generate a variety of reports that can then be used to track the performance of the whole warehouse, identifying areas for improvement, and helping to make better decisions overall.
- Growth and scalability: Using data from the WMS software can help make business decisions to grow and scale operations.
In addition to the core functions, many services include extra warehouse management system functions, such as:
- Barcode scanning: Used to automate the tracking of inventory and the picking and packing of orders.
- Real-time visibility: Real-time visibility of inventory levels, order status, and warehouse operations. This data can be leveraged to make better business decisions and level-up customer service.
- Integration with other systems: A modern WMS should offer integration with other business essentials, such as ERP, CRM, and transportation management systems. Such integration can help streamline operations and improve overall efficiency.
The right warehouse management system can help a business improve its warehouse operations in several ways. By automating warehouse operations and providing real-time visibility, a good WMS will help businesses optimise efficiency, productivity, and even customer service!
Benefits of implementing the right Warehouse Management System functions
Beyond the optimisations previously explained, there are some other unexpected benefits to installing a good WMS, like:
- Increased safety: A WMS will improve safety by only allowing qualified personnel using the correct equipment to access particular items.
- Improved compliance: A WMS can help businesses to comply with regulations like those governing inventory tracking and food safety. This will in turn help you avoid costly fines and penalties, saving your business money.
- Improved employee morale: A WMS can help to improve employee morale by empowering employees with the tools and information they need to do their jobs efficiently and effectively. This can in turn lead to decreased staff turnover and increased productivity for your business.
- Increased flexibility: A WMS can help businesses to be more flexible in responding to changes in demand. This will help avoid stock-outs and ensure you are always able to meet evolving customer demands.
- Improved customer satisfaction: A WMS can provide real-time tracking of orders, giving customers the ability to track the status of their orders online. This reduces customer inquiries and improves customer satisfaction, while also making your employees much happier.
If you are looking for a way to improve the efficiency and productivity of your warehouse and business, a great WMS implementation should be on your to-do list.
What to consider when choosing the best Warehouse Management System functions for your business
There are several factors to consider when implementing a warehouse management system (WMS):
- Type of products: When deciding which WMS to choose, it’s important to consider the type of products being stored in the warehouse. Different software is better suited for different types of products. For example, a warehouse storing food will need to have WMS with features such as product batch control, expiry date, and location storage rules. This ensures that all products are properly managed, stored, and shipped when they’re at their optimal freshness.
- Size and complexity of the warehouse: The size and complexity of the warehouse will also affect the choice of WMS. A larger warehouse with a complex layout will need a WMS that can handle a large volume of data to track the movement of inventory in real time, and split large tasks among staff. A small warehouse could be served with something much simpler and potentially cheaper.
- Cost: The cost of a WMS will vary depending on the features and functionality of the system. This means a business needs to consider what it needs before choosing the right system to implement.
- Level of support: Make sure your WMS supplier has a reputation for providing good customer support in case you run into any issues. Better support eliminates downtime.
The implementation of a WMS can be a complex process. However, the benefits of a WMS can be significant and are certainly worth the initial friction.
Best practices for implementing a Warehouse Management System
You care about your business and want it to succeed, so it’s only natural for you to feel a bit overwhelmed. Here’s how you can successfully navigate the warehouse system implementation process:
- Start by assessing your current warehouse operations. What are your current pain points? What are the benefits you seek out for implementing a WMS?
- Get backing from stakeholders. The implementation of a WMS will impact all areas of the warehouse. It’s important all stakeholders are aligned before starting the implementation process.
- Plan for a phased implementation. Implementing a WMS can be a complex process. It’s often helpful to plan for a gradual implementation, which will allow you to test the system and make changes as needed.
- Provide training for your employees. Your employees will need to be trained on how to use the WMS to help them be more efficient and productive.
- Monitor the performance of the WMS after implementation. Once the WMS is implemented, it’s important to monitor its performance to ensure that it is meeting your needs. You may need to adjust the system, or your operations as needed.
- Get help from an expert. If you’re not sure how to implement a WMS, consider hiring a consultant to help you, so you can avoid costly mistakes.
Follow these recommendations and the implementation of your WMS will be a success!
At SEQOS we know the best warehouse management relies on inventory accuracy and that’s what we’re best at.
Discover how our software can help your warehouse and business reach new and unimaginable levels. Talk with our experts today and get a free demo!