If you operate a warehousing or distribution center, it’s inevitable that you will eventually require the enhanced functionality and features of a warehouse management system (WMS). After completing a comprehensive analysis of your processes, however, the trouble is finding the right solution that adequately meets your business needs while providing a quick return on investment.
How you implement a WMS is determined by the unique demands of your warehouse. At the same time, the system is fundamentally informed by your existing infrastructure. Choosing a WMS that works for your purposes means that it has to integrate with the range of current equipment and technology you presently rely on to keep your operations flowing uninterruptedly. Moreover, a reliable warehouse management system must leverage the assets, structures, and production tools you already own to improve efficiency and profitability across your worksites.
Once you decide on implementing a WMS at your SAP Business One Warehouse, the first step is finding a trusted WMS provider. WiSys helps companies just like yours integrate your existing ERP WMS modules that you’ve acquired over time into a core ERP system with a purpose-built solution, so you don’t have to start from scratch. Ultimately, you should choose a vendor capable of partnering closely with your business and IT teams to develop a purpose-built system. A WMS provider like this will give you a product that exceeds your business requirements and promotes operational efficiency across the entire board.
As you embark on the early stages of your WMS implementation, there are several key factors to consider, namely how to implement your WMS solution and the level of integration the system needs before it can function with your current setup.
What’s the Difference Between an Integrated and Interfaced WMS?
Before giving any WMS serious consideration, a clear understanding of a few key definitions is fundamental. While “integrated” and “interfaced” might seem reasonably synonymous, the terms refer to significantly different products when discussing a WMS. The types of ERP WMS software systems available are as numerous as they are diverse, but few of them are truly integrated systems. Instead, most WMS solutions marketed today are known as “interfaced.”
So, what distinguishes integrated software from interfaced programs? Most integrated warehouse management systems depend upon a common database where your core business information continuously updates in real-time. Interfaced, on the other hand, implies that the ERP and WMS are run on separate databases and, in some situations, even distinct servers. Under the interfaced model, implementation costs are often higher, and some degree of duplicate operating data is inevitable.
Interfaced warehouse management software incorporates batch export and import programs that distribute information across multiple systems. Alternately, the WMS provider engineers a middleware solution that achieves the same results. Most software packages are bundled with the WMS. But you should anticipate several implementations and interface obstacles that necessitate customized interface development to avoid future issues that might negatively impact your profitability.
Strategizing Your WMS Purchase
Foremost, if you operate an SAP Business One-run warehouse, it is a good idea to verify the level of out-of-the-box integration with your ERP. Also, consider the software functionality and understand any compromises or other expense trade-offs that might come along with a given warehouse management system. The next question is, how much ROI will ERP/WMS integration deliver? Before moving forward with any warehouse management solution, you must arrive at a reliable estimate of how much value a warehouse-focused system brings you over the long term.
Here are a few additional points to consider before deciding on your next WMS:
- How will the software enhance the functionality of your current management system?
- How will the solution increase your revenue outlook -in both the near term and over the long run?
- Will your WMS enhance operational productivity?
- Does the system lend to improved inventory control, scheduling, management, and visibility?
- Can your scale the product into an end-to-end automation solution over time?
Choose an Adaptable WMS Solution that Grows With Your Company
As you conduct your initial analysis, ensure that you have adequately identified the role of each piece of WMS software, separating its functions and features to inform the technical integration process. Your ultimate goal should be to arrive at a flexible product that you can scale over time without having to re-engineer significant portions of your operations when it comes time to upgrade.
Our experts here at WiSys help you to see the long-term strategic implementation of your WMS while giving immediate results that improve the efficiency of your warehouse processes. Our Agility WMS lets you start with a single device to simplify the initial stages of implementation. Over the coming years, our out-of-the-box solution for your SAP Business One ERP system will evolve into a sophisticated, multi-device environment that provides invaluable real-time insight into almost every aspect of your operations.
Agility WMS specifically handles:
- Purchase orders and putaways
- Inventory tracking
- Sales order delivery
- Picking and packing
- Printing and labeling services
- Cycle Counting
- Product issues, receipts, returns, and more
For more on how we help companies gain real-time access to their valuable business data and eliminate costly manual warehouse procedures with Agility WMS, complete an online request form or call us now at 770-955-3550.