Has Your WMS Seen Better Days? Upgrade Your WMS

How do you know when it is time to upgrade your WMS or implement new software?

Simple, if your current WMS system hinders rather than strengthens your ability to execute business effectively, it’s time to upgrade your WMS.

A warehouse management system (WMS) doesn’t just locate inventory, it manages the entire warehousing and distribution operation with a single cohesive system. The rule of thumb when to upgrade your WMS, is every two or three years. This lets you stay current and makes your upgrade your WMS projects much more manageable and less intrusive.

Dysfunctional warehouse processes and technology can drag your business down quickly. And yet, so many supply chain leaders avoid making changes in this arena because of concern over process disruption, down time and perceived cost of implementation. Ironically, not investing in warehouse improvement will actually end up costing your business significantly more in the long run.

The majority of warehousing and distribution companies in the UK have already implemented or are planning to implement a WMS.

The benefits of moving to an automated system are tremendous and companies gain a quick return on their investment.

With the fast expansion of online trade, many companies find that their technology is not able to keep up with growth, and instead actually begins to hinder their expansion. It is in everyone’s best interest to know the signs of wear and to replace a system before it affects productivity and effect your customer service and reputation. Some good signs to look out for are if your current WMS supplier is providing adequate support without increasing fees, and if the functionality can be upgraded without any issues. If your WMS cannot grow with you, you will need a new one, and specifically a solution that allows for growth and added functionalities.

Are you suffering from any of the below? If so, you should consider to upgrade your WMS or a install a new system.

  1. Your current WMS has a short-sighted technology architecture. Are you working around your software? If you’ve got methods to go around your software’s current configuration, you’re probably not doing things as efficiently as you could.
  2. Your current WMS offers a limited functional footprint.
  3. Do your maintenance fees seem to be going up? Believe it or not, sometimes it can be more reasonable to upgrade than stay with the same version.
  4. Planning for Peaks and Troughs is Virtually Impossible. The key to successful warehouse management: anticipating what’s around the corner.
  5. External factors are rendering your current WMS obsolete.
  6. It is expensive, time-consuming and risky to upgrade your WMS (if you can upgrade at all).
  7. The rigidity of your current WMS hinders your ability to respond to change by incorporating new operational processes.
  8. Your current WMS vendor is showing signs that it may not be around in the future
  9. Your current WMS makes it difficult for your various applications to communicate with each other. The best part about modern day apps is how well they can communicate with you and with each other. This is a new era of technology that can greatly benefit your business. Due to this, you need to be sure that your WMS is up to speed with the technology of the day.
  10. The user interface in your current WMS is difficult to use. If your warehouse management system requires a lot of training to use, it probably is not right for your company. The greatest thing about the new age systems are how easy they are to use. Being able to have all of your employees know exactly how to operate your system with ease can lead to advances in your business.
  11. Is your system slowing down/slow to respond? If you’ve ruled out archiving or hardware challenges that might be causing a slowdown and your software version is more than a few years old, an upgrade could speed up response times.

If you have already realised the benefits of a WMS, it can be easy to become complacent by ignoring any of the above signs and assume that you’ve done everything you can to automate your system. However, no marketplace remains stagnant and your company shouldn’t either.

Today’s warehouse faces a variety of complex challenges. Consumers are demanding greater product diversity, faster order fulfilment, delivery anywhere and everywhere and easier returns processes. Meeting these needs requires a more agile and flexible approach to warehouse management, which can only be made possible using advanced warehouse management software. If your existing warehouse management resources can’t provide in-depth process visibility, business intelligence and suppleness to tackle your customer’s unique fulfilment needs, it’s time to reset and course correct with a better solution.

Your WMS plays a strategic role in supporting your business growth, responding to ever-changing and escalating customer requirements, and complying with dynamic industry regulations.

As great as the potential for benefit from a WMS, equally formidable is the possibility that a weak WMS is hampering the growth and success of your business. An ineffective WMS may be constraining your potential for adjoining business process improvements, global growth, adding new customers, and keeping existing customers happy.

Do you recognise any of these signs in your operation?

Consider investigating the possibility of replacing your WMS with an adaptable, flexible system that can help position your business to better leverage your supply chain and take advantage of new business opportunities.

Cloud systems can offer many benefits that include easy and rapid installation and deployment, as well as regular upgrades. If your legacy system seems to be costing more in maintenance and upgrade fees than it is worth, then it is a sure sign it’s time to move on.

Once you have decided to implement a WMS or upgrade your WMS to a new system, you will need to make a plan for selecting new software. Read our blog on How to avoid the pitfalls and risks of a poor WMS implementation for implementation tips.

About us:

Speak to one of our team to understand how Clarus’ WMS system can cost effectively support best practice warehouse management processes, better customer service and highly efficient working for a range of warehouse operations with pay per month options and no IT infrastructure needed.

Our platform can scale from a one user, small depot system to a 100’s of user distribution centre operation. The ClarusWMS platform will cost effectively scale with your business based on demand.

ClarusWMS is a UK based supplier of warehouse management solutions with a wealth of industry experience in third party logistics, wholesale / retail distribution, online fulfillment and manufacturing warehousing.

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