Efficient Inventory Flow with Warehouse Management Software-Part 1 “Receiving”

From order entry to fulfillment, Accellos One Warehouse works together with your ERP system to provide the end-to-end solution for the materials handling management and real-time inventory visibility throughout the enterprise.  Accellos One integrates with many popular ERP systems including the Microsoft Dynamics Suite of ERP Systems.

This document highlights a high-level process flow, derived from a subset of available functionality within Accellos One Warehouse including:

Advanced multi-warehouse, multi-zone and multi-bin management

• Automated goods-receipt processing

• Order management including advanced allocation and pick document distribution

• Pick bin replenishment

• Advanced pick and pack strategies for optimal warehouse performance

• Shipping

Once a purchase order has been entered into your ERP system, it is seamlessly transferred to the WMS (Warehouse Management Software) where receivers await shipment.  They are armed with wireless mobile computers that have integrated bar code scanners.

After an inbound shipment arrives at the warehouse, the receiving team will typically unload the truck and grab the paperwork to identify which purchase orders are being received.

The first job of the WMS software is to receive items accurately into the warehouse and then reconcile the shipment against the original purchase orders entered into your ERP system.

Rather than using pen and paper to reconcile physical receipts, the receiver will bring up the purchase orders on a handheld computer. Once this is done, the receiver only needs to start identifying the product that is being unloaded (in no particular sequence).

With Accellos One Warehouse Management Systems, the receiver counts down against items being received right off of the container. It validates items against multiple purchase orders in the background, and then seamlessly updates your ERP system. No more paperwork!

Because a receipt is recorded as soon as items are entered into the handheld, stock may be immediately put away to a bin location.  Bin location assignment following receipt may be automatic; stock can be transferred to a temporary receiving location if receipts are to be staged prior to put-away.

Most of the time, stock will be put-away following goods receipt.  If there are backorders waiting for product (standard or non-stock) or there is a “low stock alert,” stock may be put away directly to pick locations. Otherwise, stock handlers will move pallets into bulk locations (typically up in the pallet racks or on floor stacks).

Whether you receive floor loaded containers from overseas or small shipments by common courier, Accellos One Warehouse has tools to enable accurate, efficient receiving such as:

• Receive multiple orders simultaneously in no sequence, without paperwork

• Scan product bar code or use quick lookup functions to identify products as they are being received

• Print carton or pallet-ID labels as product is being received

• Receive multiple pack-sizes on the fly.

• Cross-dock non-stock items to forward pick locations

• Immediately put product away without staging

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How Goods Correctly Flow Through a Warehouse; Part 4-Waiving & Picking

Once an order is ready to pick, it may be issued for picking using the Wave function.

The warehouse manager will typically sort and select order groups for picking using the Sales Order Grid, then issue the orders for picking using the Wave function.   As a result, warehouse managers have unlimited flexibility when determining their picking strategies:

• Order lines may be split by pack-size for optimal productivity (pallet quantities picked from pallet locations, units from pick-bins).

• Customer specific labels may be printed for EDI / ASN compliance and integrated into the pick process. UCC128 serial container codes are created and scanned to build a detailed pallet or carton level ASNs.

• Orders may be grouped together for picking directly into serialized shipping cartons.

• Batch pick documents may be issued to enable the picking of multiple orders simultaneously with subsequent break-down in an order staging area.

• Paper pick-tickets may be printed for paper picking, with scanpack validation.

• Pick documents may be printed in multiple zones for simultaneous zone picking.

• One label per unit/carton/pallet may be printed with a bin location for ‘label picking’

Once the pick strategy has been determined, Accellos One Warehouse will print picking documents according to the configured rules; pickers will be directed to the pre-assigned pick locations that were automatically assigned during the allocation process.

To guarantee accuracy, hand held computers should be used during the picking process to validate the picked product and its bin location as well as the shipping container / sales order.

Finally, packing slips are printed as a result of the workflow defined in Accellos One Warehouse.  Packing slips may be printed after the last item on the order has been picked or once the shipment has been scanned before loading on to a truck.

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How Goods Correctly Flow Through a Warehouse with a Warehouse Management System; Part 3-Allocation

Warehouse allocation is responsible for the logical reservation of product for sales orders. Allocation may be based on specific criteria such as FIFO, LIFO, FEFO, batch, pack-size, zone and warehouse.

As items are received into the warehouse, they are immediately available for order allocation, eliminating any time delay or sequencing issues between receipts, receipt

Confirmation and pick-list creation.

While orders may be allocated on a first come first serve basis, the warehouse manager will more likely want to assert control over the warehouse process by prioritizing which orders are selected for allocation using the Sales Order Grid.

After an order is allocated it will fall into one of several statuses, depending on the availability of inventory and where the inventory is located in the warehouse. A few common examples include:

Held Short – There is not enough stock to satisfy the order

Ready to Wave – There is enough stock and the order is ready for picking

Held for Replenishment – There is enough stock, but there is not enough units in pick locations to fill the order, a replenishment task needs to be completed before the order can be picked.

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How Goods Correctly Flow Through a Warehouse with a Warehouse Management System; Part 2-Order Management

Sales orders placed by phone, fax or email are typically entered into your ERP system manually using the Sales Order Entry function. Orders may also be placed using a B2B (Business to Business) e-commerce web-site, remote sales through mobile devices or by EDI.

As a result of sales orders being entered into your ERP system, the warehouse management software is immediately updated.

Accellos One Warehouse is now responsible for orchestrating the order management activities. This is the prioritization of stock allocation and the assignment of work in the warehouse. The effectiveness of these tasks is critical to the efficiency of the warehouse and the service level that it provides.

Order management is a dynamic process that requires the flexibility to accommodate many different warehousing styles. Some sales orders need to be immediately released for today’s pick run. Some may be held for a future date with or without stock reservations. Orders may be prioritized by backorder status, preferred customer status, fill rate, pick-up time, and truck route or by date. There are countless criteria by which orders are prioritized, allocated and released for picking.

Request the full document at:  http://www.icepts.com/goods-through-your-warehouse-white-paper-request or contact us for additional information by clicking here.