Over the past few years, there has been an observable diversification in consumer habits, and retailers are under pressure to evolve in time to meet these developing demands. There is no blanket approach for retailers to take towards their distribution systems in these circumstances.
Their approach is largely grounded in developing their facilities using automation and a number of other new technologies as they come online. This is a given for larger retailers, who distribute their products in a great number of directions. It is also apparent that the rest of the field needs to make similar adjustments in order to keep up and fulfill their orders on time.
A lot of the change in the retail landscape is driven by ecommerce, which has put pressure on warehouse managers to evaluate and integrate relevant types of automation into their operation. One system that can be of great help is a warehouse control system (WCS). A WCS can help to automate processes, systems and material handling equipment and goes a long way to solving a warehouses automation problems.
Implementing modular WCS lets companies automate the most pressing segments of their warehousing operations or distribution centers in order to provide a first class service to customers without getting bogged down with cost. The modular approach makes integration seamless with both operatives and processes enabling even small operations to enter into direct competition with the biggest and best.
The benefits of a companies response to customer expectations by utilizing WCS is best understood when broken down into three segments; by responding to orders of a high volume, by sharpening their business processes and by improving their overall competitiveness.
There are many different types of distribution businesses out there—there is no single fix when it comes to dealing with high volume orders. This situation is made more acute by increasingly varied demands from customers. Implementing a WCS allows companies to direct handling equipment to where it is needed most, meaning that small and high volume orders can be shipped to a variety of destinations with a consistent level of success. The modularity of the system allows companies to select exactly which elements are appropriate for their product portfolios. This type of versatile system allows companies to maximize output without ripping out their existing ones.
Another great benefit of a WCS is that it allows companies to improve their business processes by providing real-time, product specific information about their systems. This means reactive maintenance can be carried out on processes as they run. In what is a truly interactive practice, operators can receive information and implement any necessary improvements to the process enabling the cycle to continue and be improved by increments in every round.
WCS makes companies much more competitive by allowing them to ship and process both small and large orders form a single hub. The software makes decisions on orders by determining the most efficient logistical approach to each one based on factors including size and destination. It also does away with a certain amount of dependence on people within the warehouse environment, reducing the collateral losses, which come along with employees. As WCS evolves it can only serve to benefit companies by saving money time and space.