Are you relying on paper or outdated software to manage your warehouse? Does your warehousing system just locate inventory? Does the data from your inventory software need to be re-entered to be used by your other business systems? Are you opening a new plant or warehouse? Are your customers expecting more than ever? If you answered “yes” to any of these questions, it may be time to consider new warehousing software.
Benefits of an Automated Warehousing System
The majority of manufacturing and distribution companies in the United States have already implemented or are planning to implement a materials and inventory management system. The benefits of moving to an automated system are tremendous and companies see a quick return on their investment.
- You are able to track and manage your inventory in real time
- With advanced planning and scheduling, you are able to reduce safety stock and inventory loss
- Labor productivity is maximized as the entire operation is managed including putaway, pick tasks, and material handling
- Capacity is improved as you can handle more goods more efficiently
- Customer satisfaction increases with on-time, accurate shipments
When You Should Consider a New System
If you have already realized the benefits of a warehousing system, it can be easy to become complacent and assume that you’ve done everything you can to automate your system. However, no marketplace remains stagnant and your company shouldn’t either. You should consider a new system if any of the following situations apply to you.
- Market demands are changing due to new technology, increased customer expectations, competitive pressure or dropping margins
- Your customers are demanding Electronic Data Interchange (EDI)
- E-commerce is affecting the way your company does business
- You have integrated new technology into your warehouse
- You are opening or consolidating warehouses
- There are inefficiencies in your manufacturing and distribution process
In these situations, upgrading an inventory system in your warehousing and distribution operations can provide numerous benefits. The software industry continues to add newer technology into their products. Most warehouse management systems, now include EDI capabilities. It is possible that you only need to add an additional module or customization to your existing system. Mobility has also become a standard capability as we discussed in a recent blog, “Why Mobility Matters in Manufacturing and Distribution”. (Infor Warehouse Mobility is included in the Infor CloudSuite Industrial package.) If you are selling over the web, you may be seeing higher transaction volumes, smaller units and thinner margins. E-commerce software will help you maximize profitability in this competitive market.
Another great time to upgrade your warehousing system is when you are integrating new equipment into your operations or even designing a new warehouse. These situations provide an opportunity to eliminate bottlenecks and optimize performance and efficiency. Products like Infor CloudSuite Industrial offer solutions to automate, streamline and verify all of your in-warehouse processes.
Once you have decided to upgrade your warehousing system, you need to make a plan for selecting new software. Download our 2015 Manufacturing Software Guide which explores four key technologies that are essential to any manufacturing operation including: Enterprise Resource Planning, Enterprise Asset Management, Configure Price Quote and Supply Chain Management. It discusses the market trends of each technology, provides a feature checklist to consider and shares success stories from industry leaders.
Emerald TC can assist you in evaluating your requirements and choosing the software that is right for you. Contact us for more information on how products like Infor CloudSuite Industrial can increase inventory-handling accuracy, improve allocation of human resources and control costs associated with managing inventory. It may be time for you to maximize your operational efficiencies with improved technology.