Maximize the benefits of a cloud-based WMS for your e-commerce business
Whether you're starting a new online shop or taking your retail business to the next level, you need a warehouse management software (WMS) that can support your growth today and far into the future.
That means choosing a cloud-based WMS is just a given. The thought of investing in a "high-tech" cloud-based WMS may be intimidating, but high-tech doesn't have to be high maintenance. Increasing your digitalization should be rewarding, not painful.
Following that guiding principle, here are a few simple rules you can follow to get the most out of your cloud-based WMS.
Understand the value of a cloud-based WMS solution
Warehouse management is about more than just better stock keeping. Your WMS should provide you with a competitive edge, simplifying your processes even as the complexity of your supply chain grows.
With cloud-based WMS software that "just works" out of the box, you save you time and money on development, integration and upgrades. You also reserve bandwidth to focus on your core business and gain more room to grow both in terms of sales volume and geographic expansion.
Choose a "cloud native" WMS platform
It's easy to find legacy WMS software that is simply retrofitted to work in the cloud – which can lead to all kinds of clunky functionality and irritating limitations.
Don't let a legacy platform turn you into a legacy brand. Be sure your WMS is designed for the cloud, not just a dressed up legacy platform. By following this rule, you'll choose a WMS that can rival the competition today, and keep you ready for the future.
Pay only for what you need with WMS-as-a-service
SaaS works on the "power by the hour" model. You only pay for what you need, but have the flexibility to scale up your package as you grow.
You also have the security of knowing that if the software doesn't work, there are penalties attached. A strong service level agreement (SLA) backing up the performance of your WMS will give you the peace of mind that software bugs or outages won't slow down your business.
With the SaaS model, you get regular, seamless upgrades sent over-the-air, just like updating an app on your phone or tablet. Since the platform is used by a number of other businesses, you benefit from updates that may solve problems you didn't even know you had.
Make sure your WMS architecture enables integration
Today, the majority of reliable cloud-based software is built on just a few dominant platforms, with Microsoft Azure and Amazon Web Services (AWS) being the two biggest (Bitlog is built on Azure). These platforms offer a foundation of speed, agility and security trusted by the biggest businesses in the world, along with the flexibility to customize and expand functionality over time.
A WMS built on modern cloud architecture should allow you to integrate with nearly any system, giving you the power to synergize "siloed" processes and connect all the moving parts of your supply chain, from multiple online marketplaces to multiple distribution centers – and everything in between.
Pick a WMS that provides a structure for growth
SkinCity is a leading Swedish retailer of professional skin care products. After experiencing rapid growth fueled by the popularity of their high quality products, they realized they needed to increase automation in their warehouse.
SkinCity chose Bitlog because our platform provides a solid structure with the flexibility to build customizations that support their specific needs. Now, all of SkinCity's tasks are configurable and prioritized based on rules, making it easier for the staff to increase their efficiency.
Since making the change, Skincity has improved picking speed by 70% and increased their effectiveness across the warehouse. With easy to understand, automated reports, they have also been able to gain better oversight of their operations and further increase their efficiency across the entire supply chain.
Choose an intuitive, easy-to-use WMS platform
If you need to constantly onboard workers in high-turnover jobs or quickly staff up to meet peak demand, you may find that employee training is easier when your WMS worker interface is hosted on consumer model tablets and phones that your staff is already familiar with.
Bythjul, a well-established Swedish tire retailer, found that clear and intuitive WMS platform design saved time on training and ensured a better performance from their staff.
Bythjul began using Bitlog when they switched from a third-party warehouse management supplier to in-house management. Training their all-new staff was a crucial part of their transition. Since Bitlog training was clear and structured, Bythjul was able to save on their start-up cost.
For clients like SkinCity and Bythjul, using Bitlog to improve warehousing is just the beginning. The real value of our cloud-based WMS platform is that it enables better customer experiences, which in turn leads to increased customer loyalty and more sales.
If you're ready to streamline your supply chain and improve your CX at the same time, please get in touch, we're ready to help!