Maintaining discipline in the warehouse can require a tremendous amount of paper handling and data entry. As a result, warehouse labor costs are high, and there is often an additional layer of administrative personnel that is very costly and inefficient. A basic warehouse management system can not only provide the level of visibility that is required to make good decisions but can help to reduce or eliminate the required layer of administrative staff. Today's leading organizations have made it an integral part of their framework. Almost 70 percent of Best-in-Class companies are using a commercial WMS to maintain workflow inside their warehouse, according to a recent Aberdeen Group survey. In contrast, only 31 percent of Laggard companies are using a commercial WMS and 57 percent are still utilizing manual systems.
Real-time warehousing is a prerequisite for success in distribution. The combination of WMS capabilities with improved integration and visibility of information, along with improved management of the entire labor force, can lead to leaner operations in the warehouse and increased flexibility and agility. Today's warehouse executives have indicated that the keys to driving performance revolve around creating more flexibility and improving the efficiency and visibility of the activities being performed. At the same time, 96 percent mentioned plans to improve operations in the next 12 to 24 months, focusing on flexibility and efficiency, a value delivered in today's commercial WMS packages.
The pressures being faced in today's warehouses are not a shock; they have been seen time and time again by executives around the globe. The endless cycle created by these pressures and their manifestation are seen repeatedly over the years. With new functionality being added and new deployment models (including SaaS and on-demand), today's warehouses have more out-of-the box capability in front of them than ever before. By automating core processes and providing more real-time visibility into daily activities, today's warehouse manager can begin to spend more time on being strategic and planning for tomorrow's business climate, rather than spending countless hours finding out where things stand today only to have it become tomorrow. With the right information in place, many warehouse managers can begin to fine-tune operations and add support for specific product lines or customer segments. By focusing on the flow of products in and out of the warehouse, processes become more flexible and agile, easily altered when disruptions occur.
Today's logistics executives are surrounded by the most valuable resources they have, the workforce. By leveraging technology and WMS solutions to support their activities, the workforce becomes more efficient and a strategic weapon to driving profitability and creating competitive advantage. Today's warehouse demands real-time visibility; today's WMS solutions deliver it.
Look for opportunities to work and partner with solution providers to develop new functionality and extend your investment to continue to grow with your business. Almost 70 percent of respondents tell Aberdeen there is a need to extend resources or services dollars to modify commercial software solutions. Working more openly with solution providers can help create more configurable and adaptable solutions for future rollouts and decrease out-of-pocket expenses.
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