Back in the 1980s, wholesalers and retailers used to manage inventory only with traditional Warehouse Management Systems (WMS). These traditional WMS were generally designed for the scenes of manufacturing, wholesaling or large-scale retail industries. Nevertheless, with transformations in global retail patterns in the past 20 to 30 years, especially the development of eCommerce, these traditional software solutions appeared to be more outmoded, cumbersome and expensive. The emergence of the Software as a Service (SaaS) WMS would therefore assist in addressing the operation needs of warehousing and fulfilment for New Retail and eCommerce.
6 Advantages of How SaaS WMS Outperforms Traditional WMS Compiled by logi-Cloud
(1) Low Threshold with Straightforward Implementation
For SMEs, a WMS with uncomplicated implementation would definitely alleviate their afflictions during the process. SaaS WMS provides users with simple Online Users’ Guide to examine and learn, users could learn by using directly in the system via easy user interface and real-time reminders in the built-in system that most people comprehend, greatly lowering the implementation threshold. Even new employees could adapt to the system in a short time. To illustrate, they can begin picking, packing and arranging couriers in just 15 minutes; On the contrary, traditional WMS only arranges instructions during the implementation period. In this regard, internal trainings would be necessary for new employees, further consuming additional human resources and time. In addition, it also requires a certain amount of energy and time to keep the training materials and latest software functions effectively corresponding.
(2) Openness of System Integration
Some enterprises have already established existing business systems, including ERP system, accounting system and trading system etc. SaaS WMS possesses accessible Application Programming Interface (Open API), enabling effortless integration with distinctive systems. As for eCommerce, SaaS WMS is also capable of automatically connecting to all major eCommerce marketplaces and express delivery platforms. Owing to the completion of Open API before implementation, SaaS WMS would be able to perform integration expeditiously when various new software or online shopping platforms appear on the market. Similarly, SaaS WMS could also handily pair and integrate with the firm’s existing ERP system even as a single party. Compared with the traditional WMS, development time and money are often consumed while connecting to new software or platforms.
(3) Adapting to the Flexibility of Business Scale
In the recent years, retail and eCommerce have continued to revamp and develop. Goods have experienced gradual fragmentation, along with their origins being diversified. With consumers’ choices and demands on the increase, the life cycle of retail products has become shorter accordingly, prompting high possibility of adjusting the scale of warehouses (including the aspects of human resources and warehouse quantity). The emergence of Omni-Channel sales model precipitate firms to further integrate the logistical operations of online and offline orders. Seeing that SaaS WMS is based on a set of infrastructure that favor continuous advancement, the system can be automatically upgraded without additional development. Not only does it retain high flexibility, but it also supports multiple warehouses, channels and platforms concurrently, coordinating efficiently and swiftly with the modification of business scale as mentioned above. Conversely, the operation of traditional WMS only based on existing system design, requiring a certain time to upgrade the system and inducing the inability to adapt to these rapid changes. For instance, the outbreak of the 2020 pandemic restricted people to stay home and shop online, driving the needs for eCommerce enterprises to expand their sales scale. At this stage, the flexible SaaS WMS would be perfect for achieving the requirements of expanding warehousing business scale within a few days.
(4) Reducing Dependence on IT Resources
While implementing traditional WMS, firms set high standards on IT professionals and their capabilities. Not only should they possess relevant knowledge and techniques of software and hardware, but they should also understand thoroughly the operation of warehouse logistics, making it difficult for enterprises to identify such competent talents. On the other hand, firms that support SaaS WMS are mostly developed by industry professionals with rich logistics experiences. Equipped with their familiarity in logistics industry, along with the IT technology and customer support services as involved in the SaaS WMS monthly subscription model, enterprises no longer have to be anxious about the lack of talents and the plight of no door.
(5) Saving Ongoing Management Costs
Traditional WMS is extremely costly, with early-stage software development ranging from HK$300,000 to more than HK$1,000,000. During project implementation, there are the purchase and settings of servers and firewalls, as well as the provision of staff trainings and project management etc., costing more than HK$100,000 as a whole while reflecting a relatively high implementation threshold. Apart from that, ongoing asset operation and maintenance costs such as server maintenance, software upgrades, energy and backup etc. should also be taken into account. In contrast to the traditional one, SaaS WMS monthly charges only account for a fraction of the monthly salary of warehouse keepers, aiding the firms to be worry-free and pooling resources only in actual operations.
(6) Keeping up with the Innovation Advantages
Getting involved in the booming and demand-changeable retail and eCommerce requires strong competitive advantages, which implies the importance of innovation. SaaS WMS only encompasses one set of code base, denoting the simplicity and continuity of innovations and modifications. Most importantly, its upgrading speed could manage to keep up with technology advancement and be promptly announced to customers, generating such crucial advantages for firms that enter retail and eCommerce competition industries. By contrast, it is compulsory for traditional WMS to carry out constructions and modifications for individual customers, considerably delaying the release schedule of brand new functions. Besides, in view of the continuous modification mechanism, basically any deficiencies in system functions could be repaired instantly and upgraded within a week.
There are certainly a lot more advantages of SaaS WMS over traditional WMS than these 6 points. Stay tuned to the logi-Cloud website or social platforms and also subscribe to the monthly email newsletter to get the latest news regarding logistics technology information.