Warehouse Management Software
Powerful software capable of greatly facilitating the management of inventory, people, and equipment
Warehouse Management System and Warehouse Control System. Respectively, WMS and WCS. Keep those acronyms. These two softwares are part of the daily life of those who deal with Intralogistics. We are talking about software capable of greatly facilitating the management of people and equipment in warehouses or Distribution Centers.
A WCS is responsible for controlling equipment in automated environments, coordinating the movements of classifiers, conveyors and stacker cranes (for boxes, miniloads or pallets), for example. The primary function of a Warehouse Control System is to adjust the synchrony between the different software, present in storage units with cutting-edge information technology. Normally, a WCS fulfills the following tasks:
- connection between system and equipment;
- monitoring the flow of materials;
- inventory control;
- planning of activities according to the demand for goods;
- integration between suppliers, manufacturers, and distribution centers.
But we cannot leave aside the specific functions of a software of this size. Below is a list listed on the Conveyco website :
- Automated separation management, that is, the control of conveyors, pickers, stacker cranes and separators;
- Label choice and creation;
- Pick-to-light management ;
- Complete system routing management;
- QC / QA management (Quality Control / Quality Assurance);
- Packing station management;
Usually these functions are synchronized with another software mentioned at the beginning of this text, the WMS. It is a useful tool for any company that wants to manage receipts, storage, separation, shipment of goods and the flow of deliveries. Its main role is to manage inventory processes and internal movements in storage units, such as replenishment of pickings (separation and preparation of orders), blocking of products and other procedures.
In other words, a WCS works better when coupled with a WMS, being a more robust software, responsible for managing broad procedures, including the activities of workers working in the Intralogistics sector. See now some of the tasks that a Warehouse Management System can perform, according to SEO (Search Engine Optimization) analyst, Danieli Albuquerque, in an article published on the Hivercloud website :
- “ Receipt scheduling — the WMS system allows you to enter information such as location and time of execution of the operation, favoring the calculation of resources and time required.
- Receipt — checking of all volumes and registration of nonconformities when the goods arrive at the warehouse.
- Addressing — control of vacant spaces in the stock premises with identification and location by barcode or RFID. In addition, it is possible to record the exact location where the goods are, including batches, facilitating location.
- Separation — with the information always updated in the system, the control, and identification of the location of each requested item, as well as the reservation of equipment, are more assertive according to the availability informed by the team.
- Dispatch — based on the WMS system reports, checking items in an area ready for shipment and sending to customers becomes faster and more efficient.
- Supply of production lines — carrying out and maintaining the routine of the production line, avoiding breaks and interruptions due to lack of inputs or equipment.
- Inventory — quick listing of all items registered in stock for manual checking, which is done quickly by reading a barcode or RFID identifier.
- Transfers — when managing several warehouses with the WMS system, transfers between different stocks, including units and branches, become more assertive and productive, avoiding errors and rework.
- Pallet handling — by inserting an RFID tag or a barcode into the pallets, it is possible to control the goods and locate them more quickly.
- Control of delivery and collection vehicles — control of trucks authorized to access the company’s yard to carry out deliveries and collections, as well as the management of the goods that were dispatched in these vehicles.
- Management reports — quick management reporting to check and make decisions, as well as measure results.
- Storage — good WMS software provides for the planning and allocation of equipment needed for operation and guidance for the team on the correct storage locations for each product. ”
Note that the SEO analyst mentioned product identification systems three times, that is, bar codes and RFID (Radio Frequency Identification) tags. Systems that avoid errors both in the storage and in the shipment of products. In addition to controlling the entry and exit of these same goods from the stock, such tools also allow checking data such as expiration date, lot number and other diverse information. Of course, all of this controlled by the Warehouse Management System.
As far as you are concerned, the WMS operates much better when connected to the company’s ERP (Enterprise Resource Planning) system. According to Cobli Blog, “when the two systems are synchronized, orders registered in the ERP automatically start the shipping processes in the WMS. The result is the synchronization of various processes, from accounting for inventory and orders to invoicing those orders.”
The implementation of these two programs (WMS and WCS) brings a series of advantages to the entrepreneur who makes the investment. Check out some of them:
- Greater agility of internal processes — these systems are quick to locate and dispatch the goods and inform the team of the exact location of these same items, resulting in more efficiency and productivity.
- Reduction of waiting time — automation via WMS/WCS saves time in various logistical operations, such as picking and shipping.
- Better control of stored products — radiofrequency tags allow the recording of all movement of goods in the warehouses.
- Order path optimization — warehouse management and control systems inform about the exact location of stocked items, which is very useful when the company has more than one warehouse, avoiding wasting time.
- Increase in stock quality — WMS and WCS software allow you to know more efficiently what space is available in warehouses and how to intelligently occupy them. Management System reports show which products leave the most. In this way, those responsible know that these goods, at a good price and good quality, should not be missing.
- Reduction in labor costs — Management and Control Systems result in reduced labor costs because they automate previously manual tasks, also reducing the possibility of human error.
There is also the Warehouse Execution System, or simply WES, less famous than the other two programs mentioned, but equally useful. The Conveyco website reports that “the warehouse execution system (WES) can be considered the next generation of WCS. In this regard, it provides the same functionality as the WCS, but builds on it to offer a higher level of warehouse management while fulfilling the same functions.”
If this type of questioning or even request is latent within your company, we at Águia Sistemas can collaborate with you in this challenge. We are able to deliver to your company all that is most modern in terms of Intralogistics. Please contact us.