Thinking of implementing a Warehouse Management System (WMS)? You’re not alone. The days of manual warehouse operations are numbered. Spreadsheets, paper and standalone systems can’t deliver the inventory accuracy and supply chain visibility it takes to stay competitive these days.
Fortunately, today’s best-of-breed WMS solutions have evolved to meet the needs of the SMB market with respect to cost, scalability and ease of use. Time-to-value can be a matter of weeks, even when systems integrations or new warehouse technology are in the mix.
Here are some top reasons why 2016 will be the year that your business – along with thousands of other SMB supply chain participants – will make the leap to a WMS:
- You don’t want to go through another peak season with your current processes. That leaves two options: curtail that impending growth, or automate.
- You’re poised to win your first contract with a major retailer. That means new complexities and compliance concerns, as well as the possibility that chargebacks will wipe out your profits if you don’t automate.
- You’re moving to a new warehouse. There’s no way you want to keep your outdated, manual processes at the new facility.
- You’re looking at complementary warehouse technology, like carousels and conveyors. But why speed up materials handling if you don’t have a system to give you visibility into what’s going where?
- You’ve done e-commerce, CRM and ERP. Now it’s time to “do WMS” and get your warehouse up to speed with your sales and marketing.
- You’re involved in a merger or acquisition, and are concerned that you won’t be able to scale warehouse activities to match your growth without putting a WMS in place. Further, a WMS can provide the metrics management needs to predict growth potential, as well as reveal the underlying cost structures required to efficiently integrate new lines of business.
- You’ve been hearing about the ROI that other SMBs in today’s omni-channel retail supply chain are accruing from WMS investments. A common metric is that operational savings from implementing a WMS are 20% annually. That means a 10-person warehouse staff currently operating at $50,000 per resource will save $100,000 per year with a WMS. Factor in the “soft benefits” resulting from improved organizational effectiveness, increased customer satisfaction and various capacity improvements, and you’re looking at a rough average ROI of twelve to eighteen months after go-live for a typical WMS.
These kinds of issues and changes may seem daunting. But they also present ideal opportunities to optimize your warehouse to yield superior supply chain visibility, greater operational efficiency and the ability to adapt quickly to ongoing changes in market demands.
Learn more about the Benefits of Warehouse Management Systems