Choosing the Right Warehouse Management Software
- Written by Ziggy Masterman
Are you finding that managing your warehouse operations is taking up too much of your time and resources? Or perhaps you’re struggling to keep up with inventory tracking, order fulfillment, and shipping logistics.
If so, it might be time to consider using warehouse management software.
Warehouse management software (WMS) can help you streamline your operations, reduce errors, and improve efficiency. With the right software in place, you can automate manual tasks, gain real-time insights into your inventory levels, and optimize your shipping and delivery processes.
In this blog post, we'll explore the key features to look for in warehouse management software, and how it can help you overcome your business challenges.
Whether you're a small business just getting started or a large enterprise looking to scale your operations, the right WMS can make all the difference.
So, let's dive in and find the perfect solution for your business!
Table of Contents
Understanding your business needs
Key features to look for
Types of warehouse management software
Choosing the right WMS
Implementation and training considerations
Help your business grow
Understanding Your Business Needs
Before you start comparing different warehouse management software solutions, it's important to slow down and take the time to understand your business needs first.
By understanding your business needs, you can identify the features and functionalities that are most important to you, and narrow down your options to find the right software for your needs.
Assess your current warehouse operations
Take a close look at your current warehouse operations and identify pain points and areas for improvement.
Are you struggling with inventory accuracy, order accuracy, or shipping and delivery?
Additionally, ask yourself what tasks are taking up the most time and resources.
Define your business goals
When defining your business goals, you also need to ask yourself what your long-term and short-term business goals are.
Do you want to increase efficiency, reduce errors, improve customer satisfaction, or all of the above?
Understanding your business goals can help you identify the features and functionalities that will help you achieve them.
Consider your budget
warehouse management software solutions can vary widely in cost, so it's important to consider your budget when evaluating your options.
Determine how much you're willing to spend, and look for solutions that provide the features and functionalities you need within your budget.
Veeqo is a free software solution that offers inventory and warehouse management, digital picking, and discounted shipping rates with the most trusted carriers in the US and UK.
We’re free, no matter how large your business is, and being owned by Amazon we’re a great option for Amazon sellers, as well as those who want to integrate with the likes of Shopify, Etsy, and eBay.
Sign-up today or book a free demo.
As your business grows, your warehouse management needs may change. Look for a warehouse management software that is scalable and can grow with your business, so you don't have to switch solutions down the line.
Key Features to Look for in a Warehouse Management Software
Once you have a good understanding of your business needs, it's time to start looking for a warehouse management software that meets those needs.
Warehouse management software is an essential tool for businesses that rely on efficient and streamlined warehouse operations.
A good warehouse management software can help you track inventory, manage orders, and optimize your workflows, resulting in cost savings, improved accuracy, and faster order fulfillment.
But with so many options available on the market, it can be difficult to choose the right one for your business needs.
In this blog post, we'll take a closer look at the key features to look for in warehouse management software to help you make an informed decision.
Inventory tracking and management
Inventory tracking and management is a critical feature of any warehouse management software.
A good WMS should allow you to track inventory levels, locations, and movements in real-time, so you always know exactly what you have in stock.
Here are some of the key inventory tracking and management features to look for:
Real-time inventory tracking: Warehouse management software should allow you to track inventory levels in real-time, so you always know how much stock you have on hand.
Inventory movement tracking: It should also track the movement of inventory within your warehouse, so you can quickly locate items and optimize your workflows.
Barcode scanning: Barcode scanning can help you track inventory more accurately and efficiently, reducing errors and speeding up your operations.
Inventory forecasting: Some WMS solutions offer inventory forecasting capabilities, which can help you anticipate demand and optimize your inventory levels.
Order management and fulfillment
Another key feature to look for in a warehouse management software is order management and fulfillment.
A good warehouse management software should help you manage orders from start to finish, including order processing, picking, packing, and shipping.
Here are some of the key order management and fulfillment features to look for:
Order processing: A good warehouse management software should allow you to process orders quickly and efficiently, so you can get products out the door faster.
Purchase Orders: One of the most important features of a WMS is the ability to manage purchase orders. This includes both creating purchase orders and receiving them. With a good WMS, you should be able to easily create purchase orders, track their status, and receive products into your inventory as they arrive.
Picking and packing optimization: A warehouse management software should help you optimize your picking and packing processes, reducing errors and increasing efficiency.
Shipping carrier integration: Look for a warehouse management software that integrates with your preferred shipping carriers, so you can easily generate shipping labels and track shipments.
Real-time order tracking: A good warehouse management software should provide real-time order tracking, so you can keep customers updated on the status of their orders.
Barcode scanning and labeling
Barcode scanning and labeling is another key feature to look for in a warehouse management software. Barcode scanning can help you track inventory and orders more accurately and efficiently, reducing errors and increasing productivity.
Here are some of the key barcode scanning and labeling features to look for:
Barcode scanning: A good warehouse management software should support barcode scanning for inventory and order tracking.
Customizable labeling: Look for a warehouse management software that allows you to customize your product labels with your own branding and product information.
Mobile scanning: If your employees need to move around your warehouse to track inventory or pick orders, look for a warehouse management software that supports mobile scanning.
Shipping and receiving management
Shipping and receiving management is another critical feature to look for in a warehouse management software.
A good warehouse management software should help you manage inbound and outbound shipments, including carrier selection, shipment tracking, and delivery confirmation.
Here are some of the key shipping and receiving management features to look for:
Carrier selection: Look for a warehouse management software that supports multiple shipping carriers
Shipment tracking: A good warehouse management software should provide real-time shipment tracking, so you can keep tabs on your inbound and outbound shipments.
Delivery confirmation: Look for a warehouse management software that provides delivery confirmation, so you can ensure your products are reaching their intended recipients.
Automated shipping: Some warehouse management software solutions offer automated shipping capabilities, which can help you save time and reduce errors by automatically generating shipping labels and carrier pickups.
Reporting and analytics
Finally, reporting and analytics is another key feature to look for in a warehouse management software.
A good warehouse management software should provide you with insights into your warehouse operations, so you can identify areas for improvement and make data-driven decisions.
Here are some of the key reporting and analytics features to look for:
Real-time reporting: Look for a warehouse management software that provides real-time reporting on inventory levels, order status, and other key metrics.
Customizable reports: A good warehouse management software should allow you to customize reports to meet your specific business needs, including inventory levels, order history, and cost of goods sold. This information can help you make informed business decisions and identify areas for improvement.
Predictive analytics: Some warehouse management software solutions offer predictive analytics capabilities, which can help you anticipate demand and optimize your operations.
Data visualization: Look for a warehouse management software that provides data visualization capabilities, such as charts and graphs, to help you better understand your warehouse operations.
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Secondary Considerations for WMS
Whilst not the key features to look out for, you should definitely make sure your Warehouse Management Software offers the following features if you’re looking to grow and scale your business, or you already have a large order and shipment volume:
Warehouse routing and layouts
Some WMS solutions, such as Veeqo, allow sellers to map their warehouses for optimized picking routes.
This can help reduce the time it takes to pick and pack orders, resulting in improved efficiency and faster order fulfillment.
Warehouse works history
A good WMS should also keep track of warehouse works history, including inventory loss, theft, and the number of items picked.
This information can help you identify any issues or inefficiencies in your warehouse operations.
Warehouse dashboarding is another useful feature that some Warehouse Management Software solutions offer.
This allows you to see real-time data on your warehouse operations, such as how many orders are left to pack to meet a 24-hour delivery cut off.
Finally, a good WMS should make it easy to conduct regular stock takes. This involves physically counting your inventory to ensure that your records are accurate.
With a warehouse management software, you should be able to quickly and easily update your inventory levels based on the results of your stock take.
Types of Warehouse Management Software Solutions
There are different types of warehouse management software solutions available, so it's important to choose the right one for your business needs.
Cloud-based vs. on-premise warehouse management software
Cloud-based warehouse management software solutions are hosted in the cloud and accessed through a web browser, while on-premise warehouse management software solutions are installed and run on your own servers.
Industry-specific warehouse management software
Some warehouse management software solutions are designed specifically for certain industries, such as retail, manufacturing, or logistics.
Customizable vs. out-of-the-box warehouse management software
Some warehouse management software solutions are highly customizable, allowing you to tailor the software to your unique business needs.
Others are more out-of-the-box and require less customization.
Choosing the Right Warehouse Management Software
Choosing the right warehouse management software is really important - it’s something that can be annoying to move later down the line, so you want to make sure you’re with a reputable software company from the start.
Here are our top things to take into consideration:
Experience and reputation: Look for a software with a good track record and experience working with businesses like yours.
Checking references and reviews: Reach out to other businesses that have worked with the software company before and read reviews online to get a better sense of their reputation.
Understanding pricing and support options: Make sure you understand the pricing structure and what kind of support they offer, including training and post-implementation support.
Implementation and Training Considerations
Once you've selected a warehouse management software, it's important to plan for a smooth implementation process. Here are some things to keep in mind:
Planning for warehouse management software implementation
Make sure you have a solid plan in place for implementing the warehouse management software, including timelines, resource allocation, and contingency plans.
Ensuring proper training and support for employees
Your employees will need proper training and support to ensure they can use the new warehouse management software effectively. Make sure the WMS software company offers comprehensive training and ongoing support.
Post-implementation support and maintenance
It's important to have a plan in place for post-implementation support and maintenance, including regular updates and bug fixes.
Make sure the software company have a strong customer support team that can be on-hand to help you should anything go wrong or if you need any further training or assistance.
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Warehouse Management Software Can Help Your Business Grow
Choosing the right warehouse management software is crucial to the success of your business.
By understanding your unique business needs, identifying key features to look for in a warehouse management software, and selecting the right software, you can implement a warehouse management software that streamlines your warehouse operations and helps your business grow.
Remember to take the time to research and evaluate your options carefully, and don't hesitate to reach out to our experts here at Veeqo for guidance - sign-up for free or book a demo today.