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Warehouse Software Users Cautiously Embrace Change in 2022

Supply chain and labor challenges resulting from the pandemic have led to companies adopting more modern methods of running their distribution facilities over the past year, but leaders are somewhat guarded in doing so given the economy.

The following are some of the key trends from a recent annual survey by Modern Materials Handling. The survey results are from over 100 supply chain readers on their implementation and usage of warehouse software automation to improve their overall warehouse management.

Warehouse Software Investment Plans

man using drawing of a calculatorIn today’s economy, materials handling management software is a hot commodity. Companies are constantly looking for ways to optimize their operations and cut costs, and this type of software can help them to do just that. As such, it’s no surprise that 26% of companies surveyed said they were investing in new materials handling management software this year. However, 20% said they were upgrading their existing software instead, and 28% said they had no plans to expand their software purchases in the next year. While the current economic climate has certainly changed the way many companies approach materials handling management, it is clear that there is still a strong demand for this type of software.

Warehouse Management Systems

Those in the warehousing or distribution industry know that warehouse management system (WMS) software is essential for keeping daily operations running efficiently. According to a recent study, the use of WMS software dropped by 10% from 2021 to 2022. Yet despite this decrease, WMS remains the top software application in use by warehouses and distribution facilities. Transportation management software (TMS), labor management software (LMS), supply chain management and planning (SCP) software, and asset tracking software round out the top five most used software types in 2022. Order management, procurement, and inventory visibility are the main reasons cited for adopting a WMS. Even with a decrease in overall usage, it is clear that warehouse management system software will continue to play a vital role in warehouse and distribution operations.

Warehouse Management Software Benefits

cloud computing conceptWMS software is a key element in warehouse operations through inventory tracking, managing warehouse space and labor, and optimizing warehouse operations. An estimated 59% of warehouses have had a WMS for one to ten years, according to the survey. In addition, warehouse management systems provide many benefits like improved security, scalability, and warehouse efficiency. Security is a key consideration for many companies when choosing a WMS system like Logimax because it can be implemented in the cloud, providing the best scalability options. The cloud also offers increased security and disaster recovery capabilities. Many companies choose to upgrade their warehouse management system (WMS) every one to five years to take advantage of new features and benefits such as cloud operation.

Logimax WMS Solutions in the cloud...Learn MoreWhat trends do you see emerging in the warehouse management software space? Are you planning any changes to your warehouse operations in the coming year? As an expert in warehouse system management software, Logimax can help guide you through the clutter with the best warehouse management solutions. Contact us today to learn more.

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Top 5 Warehouse Technology Trends for 2022

Warehouse management is more important than ever before.

The continued boom of eCommerce, coupled with the crippling effects of COVID-19 have resulted in a need for increased efficiency and effectiveness.

But what should you look for?

What trends are expected to be game-changers in the world of warehousing?
Read on, for everything you need to know about the top 5 warehouse management trends we expect to see heading into 2022.

  1. Warehouse Automation
  2. Warehouse Management Systems
  3. Voice Activated Warehouse Technology
  4. The Internet of Things (IoT)
  5. Renewable Energy Sources

1. Warehouse Automation
Warehouse management automation has been gaining popularity for many years, but with increased warehouse distribution needs, it’s even more important now. The right automation tools can help you meet demands, improve customer satisfaction and reduce labor costs.

2. Warehouse Management Systems (WMS)
As technology increases and warehouses become more digitized, a top-notch WMS can be a game-changer. Enhance inventory and order management processes, improve order picking and replenishment, and increase overall productivity while lowering costs. All this and much more are the incredible benefits of a strong warehouse management software system. The ROI on your WMS can change the course of your business.

3. Voice Activated Warehouse Technology
Traditional scanners are quickly being replaced with voice-activated technology that can enhance and improve workflow processes within your warehouse. Still, despite this increasing gain in popularity, we expect that most warehouses will adopt a more combined approach, incorporating both scanners for barcode data collection and voice activated technology. Keep in mind, handheld device barcode scanners can be much more effective in reducing human error and reading/voice mishaps when translating very long serial numbers.

4. The Internet of Things (IoT)
Automation across the world of warehousing is making huge advances through The Internet of Things (IoT). Connected warehouses result in a totally coordinated, seamless unit using IOT sensors that allow you to monitor everything from pallets, to drones, to robots, and other equipment in real-time and across multiple users and inputs. Collect, store and share your data efficiently and effectively while supervising employees remotely through the Internet of things.

5. Renewable Energy Sources
To say that warehouses are energy suckers is an understatement. Particularly for those who utilize cold storage equipment, the use of energy can put increased financial strain and risk across your operation. Reducing your environmental impact through the use of renewable energy sources can not only boost sustainability, it can also be an added value prop for your green customers while reducing overall costs. Installing solar panels and using wind turbines to power facilities can be a huge offset in terms of power consumption.

Advanced technology in warehouse operations isn’t going to slow down anytime soon. While the majority of warehouses across the globe still use a fair share of manual labor, streamlining and focusing on efficiency through the use of technology and adopting new, more efficient processes can help solve many of the pain points you’re facing when it comes to running your warehouse efficiently.

Want to see Logimax in action? Schedule a demo today.

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Why Your WMS Software is Key to Unlocking Current Supply Chain Problems

You’ve read it in the headlines. It affects everyday life whether you are the consumer or a product supplier. Severe supply chain backlogs are crippling product sales everywhere and it’s not only costing companies significantly but straining customer relationships. Issues can include late shipments, persistent out-of-stocks, and disgruntled end-users, to name a few.

With no supply chain relief in the near future, you must have a strong grasp of your current warehouse management system (WMS) software and its capabilities, or lack thereof. Does your current WMS software live up to your expectations? If not, a re-evaluation may be in order.

To be the most efficient, and therefore most profitable, during and after this dreadful supply chain crisis, the right WMS software can help you succeed.

Top Benefits of Exceptional Warehouse Management (WMS) Software

  1. Better Inventory Visibility – If your current WMS software is constantly experiencing problems or not providing you real-time updates, it can lead to considerable operational problems. With a more powerful WMS software system from Logimax, you can view up-to-date inventory data to see what’s actually in stock and ready to go during all points of the distribution process. From receiving to stocking to storing, having a clear picture of exactly what products are on hand means you can maintain the appropriate amount of inventory, process orders, and ship on time without issue. A great WMS software also provides valuable forecast information to help you get a jump on reordering stock in enough time to avoid supply chain problems.
  2. Lower Operating Costs – If your current WMS software is not providing data in one or more areas, it can drastically affect your overall warehouse operations. A great deal of time can be wasted having employees searching the aisles to locate products because your software doesn’t allow for proper inventory tracking. The right software from Logimax can lower your operating costs by helping you plan your warehouse space and labor as efficiently as possible. A superior provider can aid you in determining the proper inventory location, shelving set-up, and pallet arrangement, plus the equipment needed for the best functionality.
  3. Optimal Security – It is critically important that your WMS software provides the highest security to thwart threats to your operations. Security breaches will cause even more problems on top of the current supply chain crisis. Are your warehouse operations truly protected through your current software? A superior system allows you the ability to create audit trails so transactions are tracked to specific employees, therefore reducing the risk of theft and improving accountability. Software with user-access controls means you decide which team member has access to specific levels of information across your organization.
  4. Just-in-Time (JIT) and Just-in-Case (JIC) Inventory – Just-in-time (JIT) inventory ensures you aren’t holding large amounts of inventory for long periods of time, while Just-in-Case (JIC) inventory imagines the worst-case scenario for your most critical items (think semiconductors or, two years ago, masks and hand sanitizers) so you don’t run out. It’s a balance that requires forecasting and continually adjusting that forecast as things change. Your WMS software should enable you to set and update reorder levels and to exchange that information in real-time with your suppliers and customers. Whether you distribute sourced products from overseas or are kitting for local manufacturers, if they can’t keep you stocked and you don’t have products to store and distribute, it will hurt your bottom line.
  5. Improved Billing Management – Billing tools or modules built right into WMS software or that can seamlessly integrate with third-party apps make the process of managing A/R and A/P a snap. By adding a multi-functional software package from Logimax you can manage WMS billing without the hassles and added resources that may be necessary with less powerful software.
  6. Enhanced Supplier and Customer Relationships – Good relationships are more important now than ever given today’s uncertain supply chain atmosphere. With advanced WMS software, you can shorten wait times at the dock doors by scheduling inbound deliveries and outbound shipments, all resulting in faster turnaround times for customers. Couple this with radio frequency tools to drastically improve order accuracy and fulfillment. The result? Your increased reputation for responsiveness will ensure your customers are more than satisfied with your performance.

See how Logimax software can put your company on the right track today.

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Online retail boom driving demand for warehouse space across U.S.

The growth of eCommerce is one of the factors responsible for shrinking warehouse space across the U.S., according to a report released this month from the CBRE Group, a real estate brokerage firm.

As reported in the Wall Street Journal
 and elsewhere, despite an additional 50 million square feet of new warehouse space entering the market during the third quarter of this year, availability is still the lowest in 18 years. The industrial availability rate, which measures vacant or soon-to-be vacant properties fell to 7 percent, the lowest since 2000.

Richard Barkham, a global chief economist at the CBRE Group, told the Wall Street Journal that “a really strong consumer economy” is responsible for the disappearing space — Much of that has to do with the growth of online retailing.

That growth will surge this holiday season, as it does every year. A study released this month by CPC Strategy reports that 80 percent of consumers will be searching Amazon this holiday season and online shopping will result in nearly half (46 percent) of all gift purchases this year, followed by 29 percent of shoppers preferring a brick-and-mortar experience. A quarter of holiday shoppers plan to shop both in stores and online.

As retailers prepare for the online rush, importers have placed their orders earlier than usual. As reported in the Wall Street Journal, the National Retail Federation reports that all major U.S. seaports handled 2.7 percent more container cargo in September than the same month the previous year. That follows a 3.4 percent year-to-year rise in August and a record-setting July. The NRF estimates that inbound capacity will continue to grow through the end of this year.

So if warehouse space is shrinking, what will it take to open up more facilities?

The CBRE Group also has outlined the factors that represent the most favorable conditions to develop multi-story warehouse space. They are: A large and dense population, high industrial land prices and rents, and a significant use of online retailing by the surrounding population.

The five cities that fit that bill are New York City, San Francisco, Miami, Chicago, and Los Angeles.

Until that new space opens up, CBRE’s Barkham says that demand will continue, aided by strong economic conditions and the stimulus that came from the recent tax cut. “We thought this cycle might end slowly but it’s got extra legs,” he said.

Are you considering expanding your warehouse space? Are you finding it easy or cost prohibitive? Which parts of the U.S. are you considering — or would consider if it was an option. Let us know in the comments below!