How to choose Warehouse Management System (WMS)?

The selection and introduction of (new) warehouse management systems such large and complex projects requires strong preparation and end-to-end planning. Especially when you are building a partnership with a future WMS service provider, on average this will last at least ten years.

To choose the right warehouse management system, you must implement star management by preparing a detailed description of the existing logistics environment and analyzing the logistics process very carefully. Evaluate weaknesses in logistics and areas of problems (eg, high picking error rates, high returns, slow warehouse lead times, and inefficient network or logistics). Determine the requirements for the new system.

How does digital transformation and logistics 4.0 affect your business processes? What do you want the company to look like in five or ten years?

Successful team successfully completed the project! Therefore, combining the right project teams is the key to the success of the project.

Introducing a warehouse management system is a huge challenge for most companies. Therefore, with the full support of management, you should form a proactive team of experts and have the qualifications required for all aspects of the project. This includes employees in all relevant departments of the project team, such as warehouse and transportation logistics, IT and production.

1.Analyze and evaluate the logistics environment

The more you know about the strengths and weaknesses of existing logistics, the better you can prepare for the right WMS. Discuss with the project team the features required for the logistics environment and prioritize them.

2.Create specification

The norm is the foundation. It describes all the requirements of the service provider's planned software, hardware and related services, as well as the terms of the contract. It is also the basis for obtaining a quote.

3.Identify the "experts" of the warehouse management system

You can identify leading providers of leading warehouse management systems because of their cross-industry software portfolio and industry-specific technical expertise. Professional project teams provide professional project management and are within deadlines and budgets. Qualified suppliers also work with leading logistics partners such as hardware suppliers for portable scanners. This ensures that complex projects with challenging requirements can be implemented in a very short time.

References in logistics are almost as important. If you find that many high-profile logistics customers provide a reference for WMS providers, you have further evidence that the provider can handle a very different set of customer requirements. Contact multiple users of a specific warehouse management system to gain useful insights from their actual experience with the system.

Another clear piece of expertise is whether a WMS provider is a one-stop shop for many different services. WMS providers respond by adding subsystem and warehouse technologies and devices to their service portfolio.

When selecting, check to see if the provider's product portfolio includes training courses, general training, and seminars by qualified teachers to provide your warehouse staff with the qualifications they need to meet new challenges and tasks. Many providers offer special trainer training courses to train company managers to train their employees.

4.Functional combination of WMS solutions

What features will be required for your company in future WMS solutions - is the standard feature sufficient for your warehouse structure and managing your master data, inventory and shipping? Or do you (yet) need other features, such as a control center for handling dangerous goods or mobile devices? Learn about the criteria to consider when choosing a future WMS system.

5.Quality assurance

Once you've evaluated the information provided by several WMS providers, it's worth choosing two or three potential providers and looking at them more closely. The event demo is the first step, then personally visit the customers they provide for reference.

The next step involves requiring a specific provider to schedule access to its customers. Carefully choose the companies you visit and make sure they are comparable to your company in terms of size, business area and logistics environment. Prepare a questionnaire to access the provider's customers in order to evaluate the pros and cons of the software from the perspective of each customer. The questionnaire should cover the functions of the warehouse management software and the services provided by the supplier before and after implementation. Questions may include general points such as the introduction of a project (for example, the duration and number of project members), as well as the provider itself (eg, satisfaction, support, expertise, and expertise) and specific software (eg, processing, functionality, pros and cons).

Reprinted from the network