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Recently, we sat down with Andrey Kazachkov, our Head of Warehouse Automation at First Line Software, to learn more about what companies achieve by implementing the viadat Warehouse Management System (WMS) by viastore SOFTWARE. Andrey also shared the advantages of choosing an implementation partner with the development resources required to customize the WMS.

Thank you for taking the time to talk with us, Andrey. Tell us about what’s happening in warehouse automation and the driving factors for companies to implement WMS systems at their warehouse locations– sooner rather than later.

Kazachkov. The warehouse automation market is expanding rapidly with numerous global vendors, yet overall adoption is in the early stages. A post-pandemic market research study by LogisticsIQ reports that less than a few percent of the warehouse space is fully automated.

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Recent post-pandemic research by ResearchAndMarkets.com concludes that existing, fully automated systems can increase maximum output capacity while reducing warehouse-related labor costs up to 65% and logistics-related spatial use up to 60%. The potential for warehouse automation to transform warehouse intralogistics is tremendous.

For many companies, implementing warehouse automation becomes a competitive advantage. Fast order processing and product delivery translates to customer satisfaction and repeat buyers for eCommerce companies. Manufacturers rely on reliable delivery of parts from a warehouse to the plant for efficient assembly and product production.

The warehouse automation sector includes a niche for highly specialized logistics solutions that solve unique warehouse intralogistics challenges. First Line Software specializes in this segment in partnership with viastore SOFTWARE, a German manufacturer of intralogistics systems.

What do companies gain by implementing WMS solutions and integrating them with other enterprise systems?

Kazachkov: Companies use WMS systems to solve warehouse intralogistics complexities through automation and the optimization of materials and information flow, including coordinating people and robots, cranes and forklifts, or transporting parts or products. Integrating a WMS system with other enterprise systems automates additional workflows, enables seamless data-sharing and reporting, and eliminates manual and paper-based inventory control. There are other reasons companies choose to adopt warehouse automation. They may be building new warehouse facilities, upgrading their current warehouse system, or need transparency into their intralogistics. 

What types of companies use viastore SOFTWARE solutions?

Kazachkov: The clients we work with may have one or more of the following operational factors: over 1,500 item locations within a warehouse, process 1,000 or more delivery items per day, have five or more full-time employees assigned to the warehouse, or fulfill 300 or more orders per day.

They often manage high-value items such as auto parts and pharmaceuticals that require a high degree of accuracy when transporting from one location to the next, which can even include maintaining a specific temperature. Automated warehouses are generally high-rise premises with a height of up to 40 meters or more, while conventional warehouses have a total area of ??10,000 square meters or more. 

How did the collaboration between First Line Software and viastore SOFTWARE come about?

Kazachkov: Customers are facing more complex tasks that require innovation in product development. viastore SOFTWARE was interested in First Line because of our implementation expertise and our ability to customize their software solutions for specific use cases. We also have extensive experience with product development and system fine-tuning, including source code knowledge of the viadat SYSTEM.

First Line Software recognized the demand for specialized warehouse systems was gaining momentum, which would be an excellent expansion opportunity. Engaging in a partnership with a leading global developer that demonstrated extensive experience in implementing and a solid understanding of warehouse logistics was a key to capitalizing on this market. 

First Line Software is actively involved in projects to implement and customize WMS systems for companies in diverse industries and located in 25 countries across five continents. Read our warehouse automation overview to learn more.

In Part Two of this interview, Andrey Kazachkov will discuss an implementation project FLS completed and share the results several clients achieved by automating their warehouse operations.

Attend our webinar on 25th February 2021 to hear about how we worked with our client to overcome the challenges of a 100% remote WMS customization, implementation, and launch. We’ll share best practices and tips for communication and collaboration to capture and deliver on the client’s requirements, and the innovative thinking that led to an insider’s view of the system launch for all remote stakeholders, including the First Line Software team.

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