What comes to mind when envisioning a traditional warehouse? Men on forklifts, endless rows of pallets and busy loading docks are a few common observations. While there is no doubt that such elements still exist, it is an undeniable fact that many warehouses are now massively automated. Not only will this increase levels of in-house efficiency, but higher levels of productivity obviously equate to increased profit margins. Although it is impossible to remove the human element from the equation, the use of advanced digital software packages is just as prevalent. What benefits can these systems offer and why is choosing the right platform a critical step?
Out with the Old and in with the New
If we rewind to 20 years ago, digital warehouse management tended to be limited to programs such as Microsoft Excel and even more traditional DOS architecture. Of course, such systems could hardly cope with the frenetic demands of the modern warehouse. This is why applications were required to adapt to these requirements.
Unfortunately, many of these locations are still weighed down by outdated and/or substandard software systems. This often results from the hesitance of management to make a small capital investment without being certain of the return on investment (ROI). This is a very dangerous position to take, as it will normally result in an inefficient warehouse.
The fact of the matter is that change represents a vital portion of any business cycle and this observation is just as true in regards to warehouse management. It is vital to determine whether or not the proper systems are in place by asking questions such as:
- Has it become difficult to manage daily workloads?
- Have logistical concerns become too challenging?
- How much time is spent every month correcting avoidable errors?
- Do employees feel overwhelmed or unable to complete their delegated tasks?
If you have answered “yes” to one or more of these queries, the chances are that you require an updated B2B ecommerce solution.
One Size Does Not Fit All
Still, off-of-the-shelf packages are normally not sufficient to meet and exceed your expectations. It is much better to become partnered with a bespoke e-commerce provider that is able to address the discrete requirements of your warehouse. After all, every firm is associated with its unique storage challenges. These should be met with nothing less than the very best software solutions.
Search for a system which boasts a scalable edge so that it can be modified as needs may dictate. This will expedite current in-house processes and ensure that future replacements are not necessary. While this might involve a bit of trial and error, the majority of reputable providers offer free demo versions of the products. No initial financial commitment will need to be made until you are fully confident with the associated utilities and tools.
Managing an active warehouse can be quite challenging, so adopting the correct technology today will lead to a brighter tomorrow.