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Recipe for implementation

06 June 2014

Proteus Software explains the importance of having the best WMS ingredients and the recipe that will help you streamline and grow your business.

Warehouses and distribution centres exist at the core of logistics to bring control, efficiency and speed to the movement of goods through your network.


Key to this is using a WMS. It is difficult to improve warehouse operation without flexibility. You will not be able to meet the demands of your customers, or proactively exceed expectations. Service will be reduced and will not meet the needs of your business. A best of breed WMS can give you the opportunity to provide value added capabilities to your business, to differentiate yourselves from your competitors and satisfy your customers.


But how to get the recipe right? First, ask yourself what makes up a recipe. 


Recipes are a set of instructions that can be simplified into five components. First, define the purpose of completing a recipe, outline the desired outcome. Secondly, describe the process or technique required. Third, make sure the desired and probable outcome will meet your business needs. Fourth, assess the time it takes to complete the recipe. This will allow you to plan for the resource and budget needed. Finally, define the capabilities needed to successfully bring the recipe to conclusion.


What ingredients will you need?

You can complete a WMS recipe and still not attain the desired results, due to the quality of the ingredients used.  But the highest and freshest quality ingredients will be constrained by the allocated budget set by the business.


The key to any recipe is the ability to blend ingredients that complement each other to produce the final result, and setting the right level of investment suited to your business, and senior management sponsorship.


The purpose

As a business you need to ask - why implement a WMS? The WMS is implemented for various reasons, but the prime reason still remains financial. Companies can no longer afford to have a culture of a "wait and see” due to the initial costs of implementing a WMS, but are looking at the financial benefits the WMS will earn.


For the financial rewards to be reaped a WMS must be able to provide better, faster, more accurate data in order to reduce inventories, optimise the use of warehouse space and maximise the efficiency of the warehouse operation.


This will save money, increase service levels and give the business the ability to earn more revenue and grow its business.




The Recipe for a successful implementation of a WMS:


Ingredients

• Take one WMS.

• Add an Application Consultant/Technical Consultant.

• Add a Customer Project Champion.

• Add internal IT capacity.

• Blend together with senior management support.


Cooking

• Set realistic timescales.

• Check progress regularly.

• When cooked take a nibble – test the system.

• Do not eat before all the processes have been completed.


Consume - Go live!

Digest the results:

• Increased throughput.

• Rises in accuracy levels.

• Increased capacity.

• Cyclical automatic stock takes.

• Automatic reporting.

• Less staff to handle same or increased throughput.

• ROI achieved within 12-18 months.

 
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