- The scale of automation, inventory movement, channels, end users and client size are all necessary considerations when choosing between the various types of inventory management systems.
- As e-commerce needs increase fulfillment channels, the differences between warehouse management (WMS), control (WCS) and execution (WES) systems are becoming increasingly murky, according to DC Velocity. Understanding the difference is essential for companies considering the capital investment.
- Management systems control the flow of inventory into, within, and exiting the warehouse; control systems offer real-time integration for highly automated facilities; execution systems manage fulfillment both to consumers and stores, according to the report.
Increased cloud adoption, omnichannel offerings and M&As by solutions companies are making warehouses simultaneously more easy and difficult to manage.
The traditional warehouse model relied on the deliver of goods to retailers, but more and more warehouses are becoming the origin point for e-commerce fulfillment in smaller packages, rather than in large pallets to store. Similarly, as more clients within different means may share warehouse space within some 3PL models, it may be necessary to have a combination of all solutions at once.
Yet, market trends come and go so unless the warehouse is fully automated while managing multiple clients, it may not be necessary. As integration capabilities rise, it may be best to stick to a single, proven solution and wait until other needs rise to demand mixed solutions.