Stanley Chew, director of international operations with HighJump Software, offers these "little-known secrets" of warehouse management systems (WMS):
- The WMS business is not about products -- it's about services. While in the past companies were looking for technology, according to Chew, today's business expectations are upgrades and autonomy.
- The "Fit to Requirements" evaluation process doesn't work. "Implementing a WMS is the toughest software implementation there is," Chew asserts. Companies need to adopt a technology strategy and stick to it, and make sure the WMS vendor aligns to that strategy as well.
- Your WMS must be good enough to maximize return on investment. Logistics managers are typically interested in two things, Chew says: the product is delivered on time and in full to the customer, and the product is delivered at the lowest possible cost to the operation. Most WMS systems get modified at some point, with some projections being as high as 98%, so make sure you have a WMS whose features and functions will meet those two criteria, Chew recommends.