5 reasons why your warehouse management system return on investment is lower than it should be

If you’re frustrated with your current warehouse management system because you consider the return on investment you’re getting is too low, here are some likely reasons why and what to do about it.

1. No longer supports your processes

If your warehouse management system appears to require many manual workarounds or expensive software patches and fixes then its current configuration and data set-up is not supporting your current business processes.  If this is the case your return on investment will be taking a hit.  So rather than live with this you can:

  • Conduct an internal process and business analysis review
  • Complete some system analysis to see if the warehouse management system configuration and data set-up can be changed
  • Look at the cost comparisons for making adequate software changes versus selecting a new vendor
  • Consider the best return on investment options including client-server and cloud based or Software as a Service models

2. Cannot meet customer requirements

Whether your customers require:

  • Live stock updates on the web
  • Automatic shipping notifications
  • Accurate value added services costings
  • Ways to reduce cost
  • Integrated track and trace for shipment delivery

If you’re current warehouse management system cannot deliver then you’ll be faced with either increases in costs by putting manual work arounds in place or failing to deliver against requests or requirements.  If this is the case then consider following the processes in (1) above and look for greater returns on investment.

3. Does not support pay as you go

Your business may benefit from pay as you go or pay for what you use software.  This is because your transaction usage is low, or the functionality you require is thinly spread between a number of features, in other words you may use a variety of functions on an infrequent basis.  If this is the case then review the return on investment (ROI) models for these types pay as you go and pay as you use solutions.

4. Restricted labour management features

Labour management is a key aspect of a warehouse management system, which is one key differentiator from stock control software.  Feature rich warehouse management systems create, control and direct labour management activities through a wide range of operational activities.  If your warehouse system isn’t helping you control labour enough, say because too many people are completing jobs outside the system or too many hours are not being tracked, then your choice is to use specialist labour productivity improvement solutions or consider the ROI for a new warehouse management system altogether.

5. Lack of hardware options

If you’re restricted with the type of data capture devices you can use with the warehouse system and the functionality they have then this will impact your productivity performance and increase the need for manual workarounds.  The type of devices we’re talking about include voice technology, barcode scanners, enterprise digital assistants and truck terminals for example.  Since these all strongly impact cost, consider alternative technology that meets your business goals and aims rather than living with what you have.

These are just some reasons why your ROI is lower than you would like.