When discussing warehouses and their equipment, the issue of warehouse logistics itself should always come first. By its term is meant any activity aimed at optimizing the operation of a facility and the overall management of the supply chain at every stage. It is the implementation, supervision and control of operations related to warehouse operations. That is, in fact, the smooth operation of a warehouse is a consequence of properly planned and implemented logistics activities.
Warehouse logistics activities are mainly aimed at speeding up warehouse operations, optimizing space utilization and reducing losses. Proper implementation of these activities will result in the absence of downtime in the delivery of goods, a reduction in the number of errors, constant availability of products and a reduction in the cost of the warehouse itself – these features, in turn, significantly improve the competitiveness of the company.
WMS software: effective management of warehouse logistics
In order to reduce errors as much as possible, streamline the process of data flow and the way it is stored, as well as save time (and after all, time is currency), logistics processes in the warehouse had to be automated. Today, management is aided by specialized computer software, such as the Warehouse Management System (WMS), developed exclusively with the specifics of warehouse operations in mind. A WMS has a wide range of functions necessary for coordinating the daily operation of a warehouse – in addition, it can be integrated with an ERP system, to which our previous article was dedicated. Compared to an ERP system, a WMS gives you the ability to perform much more advanced logistics operations.
The main functions of WMS software consist in organizing the very course of goods receipt, optimizing the method of storage, supporting the course of the labeling and picking process, and updating information about the status of resources in the warehouse. This system contains a number of specialized modules, each of which is responsible for specific logistics processes in the warehouse. With its help, we are able to manage any number of warehouses, taking into account their division into different areas and storage locations. We make a distinction between a physical warehouse, i.e. a place with a specific area and number of storage locations, and a logical warehouse – usually unlimited in quantity by the system, created according to criteria such as product sizes, industries or suppliers. Thus, with the help of a WMS, it is possible to handle the logical structures of a warehouse, without separating them physically.
Modern IT solutions: indispensable tools in warehouse logistics
A high level of specialization, a multitude of configuration options and flexibility of integration with other systems are the most important advantages of a WMS. Today, solutions of this type are the basis for the functioning of many logistics centers (including our company LCL Logistic), providing employees with an important tool for their work. Without the ability to use modern IT solutions, our reality would be quite different. For some industries, it already seems almost impossible to function within them without the ability to automate processes and take advantage of emerging new technologies.