Warehouse Management Solutions For Effective Supply Chain Management

The Goal of a Warehouse

The ultimate goal of a warehouse is to establish total control over the movement and storage of goods most efficiently. The warehouse management solutions of today are driven by software. These software-driven solutions enable the incorporation of data capture in real time as well as the induction of the various printing technologies into the warehouse infrastructure. With such software it will be possible to optimize all normal warehouse tasks related to:

  • The inventory management of both raw and finished goods
  • The directed picking of goods and putting away
  • Replenishment
  • Packaging and supply chain logistics

Such optimization will help save time and make greater profits. The Warehouse Management Systems or WMS may be either standalone applications or these could be integrated with an Enterprise Resource Planning or ERP system that already exists. The following can help in the creation of a system that is both robust and efficient:

  • WMS software
  • Mobile Computers
  • Scanners
  • Labeling equipment and
  • Wireless infrastructure.

Once you have the right kind of solution in place it is possible for you to scale the system upwards as the needs of the business grows.

Warehouse Management Solutions For Effective Supply Chain Management

The Main Benefits of a WMS

The ultimate goal of all warehouse management solutions is to give you an efficient warehouse with cost-saving benefits. Such benefits will include:

  • Data that is collected on mobile computers in a Wireless Local Area Network or WLAN. Such data can be transmitted immediately to your database.
  • Automated data capture would remove the scope of any human error.
  • There would be increased productivity owing to direct messaging, sequenced procedures of pick and put away as well as paperless office system.
  • There would be total integration with the software that exists for accounting and enterprise resource planning or ERP. Such software would be used to reconcile the orders placed with the shipments that have been received.

The Essentials of Warehouse Management

The WMS is an essential part of the supply chain in all kinds of businesses. Your warehouse is ultimately a building or storage space that is full of products which are changing and getting updated continuously. It is the WMS that will ultimately keep a control over all movements with the help of processes that include receiving and putting away besides picking and shipping. There was a time when these functions were all carried out with the paper documentation. Such manual systems naturally had plenty of room for human errors besides being slow. The system also suffered from restricted visibility over the total area of operation.

Essentially, the WMS has stepped in to automate all the work that was done by hand. Today the WMS is constantly attempting to achieve greater accuracy for providing an improved customer experience and better returns of cost. There are barcode scanners and printers that have adopted auto ID technologies; there are mobile computers and wireless networking besides other software that is more advanced. These allow for designing systems that in real time exercise control over both the movement as well as the storage of products and materials inside the warehouse. The better the WMS the higher is the speed and greater the volume of products that your warehouse is able to process.

The latest WMS has now extended its functions that now include:

  • Light manufacturing
  • Transportation management
  • Order management and even the
  • Accounting systems.

However, the core functions of an efficient WMS remain the same as that of directed picking and replenishment besides put away. While doing this the WMS will use a combination of various inputs that include:

  • Item description
  • Location
  • Quantity
  • Unit of measure and
  • Order information

With the help of such information the WMS is able to determine where the materials will be stocked, where they will be picked from and the sequence in which these operations will be performed.