A good Warehouse Management System should be capable of doing far more than just keeping tabs on stock levels, although doing that accurately and in real time is a critical function. No doubt, your organisation is taking advantage of the most important functionality to maximise its ROI.
While we don’t know what system you have installed or what functionality it offers, these simple suggestions will help increase overall efficiency amongst users of any WMS.
1) Open A Dedicated Communication Channel For WMS Matters
Users of the WMS may be in multiple locations or even scattered across the globe. Communicating information regarding the WMS is often haphazard and confined to silos, such as within one office, one department or one group of warehouse operatives.
There are many online collaboration tools available on the market today, many of them free to use. Employees could easily be trained to submit observations, tips and tricks about your WMS so that there is one central location where the knowledge is available and can be shared.
This is not at all related to support issues or trouble tickets. It’s more like an efficiency and productivity initiative that is easy to implement and can prove valuable in making users more efficient.
2) Conduct A Quarterly WMS Online Meeting
Along the same lines as the previous tip, this activity has proven highly popular and successful in many distributed businesses with multiple warehouses in different locations. Simply bringing relevant staff together by means of a phone-in meeting using a system such as Webinar or similar, provides a platform for sharing experiences, issues and information about the WMS. In practice, these sessions double up as training sessions because individuals frequently ask questions like “how did you do X or Y?” The response is heard and taken on board by everyone on the call.
Generally speaking it is best if management do not participate. This provides an atmosphere that is more conducive to admitting mistakes, which prompts responses from others who may have done the same thing but subsequently discovered worthwhile workarounds or ways of correcting them. All good and all valuable for improving efficiency and expertise in using your WMS.
3) Incorporate RFID Into Inventory & WMS
RFID is proven to lead to significantly greater accuracy in stock control, better than barcode systems and perhaps as much as 25 times faster for stock counts. We have tagged this tip on at the end because it doesn’t really fit into a category of “simple” tweaks, and in any case may not suit all businesses, but is well worth bearing in mind for the future.
Increase Your Warehouse Productivity
Investing in the right WMS is a very important step for any business. Every operation has different stock handling requirements and processes, so a WMS that works well for Company A may be totally unsuitable for Company B. We at Logistics Planning Consultants are not WMS vendors but we provide impartial advice and consultancy to help clients choose the most suitable system for their needs.
Download our free Warehouse Productivity Guide written for fast moving SMEs with expansion plans and a need to optimise their warehouse and general logistics.