WMS/TMS: the criteria for choosing the right solution

Introduction

A real boost in the race to become ever more competitive, logistics plays an essential role in both performance and the company’s brand image. Eager to increase productivity and the service rate of their warehouse, in addition to their transport budget, many stakeholders are opting for a WMS (Warehouse Management System) and a TMS (Transportation Management System), to manage logistics flows, from acceptance to shipping of goods and to have comprehensive oversight of their activity. 

Even if they have different levels of maturity, the choice of WMS and TMS solutions is a strategic challenge for companies. You must also bear in mind that this type of project represents a significant investment both in terms of finance and time, so there must be a guaranteed return on investment. At Savoye, when consulting with our customers, we have noticed that selecting such a tool is often based on criteria to do with the product’s features, the characteristics of the solution under review and the profile of the supplier, its experience and size. .  

 

WMS/TMS : the different components of an ideal solution 

The Functional Scope of the software is, of course, the first requirement to be examined closely. In addition to meeting your requirements, the solution must be vast and comprehensive, as standard. In addition to business features, you will perhaps need a multilingual or multi-company tool, or one with distinct ergonomics to facilitate your teams’ use of the application. These points must also be taken into consideration. You’ll also need to evaluate how “up-to-date” your supplier is. Is the solution natively cloud-based? Is it offered in SaaS mode and with a license? Does it offer enough flexibility for you to choose your hosting mode?  Your solution must be in step with new technological standards on the market, to enable you to make the most of the innovations developed with the advent of AI and Machine Learning. 

 

The modular aspect of the solution is also a critical component in the selection process, for a variety of reasons. Firstly, a modular solution will be able to offer you a more comprehensive and wider functional scope. This is true for our ODATiO solution, which combines a WMS and TMS in one application.

 

Capable of adapting to a standard requirement at first, then gradually developing depending on the needs of your business, ODATiO supports the development of your business without having to change solutions or add additional interfaces. Modularity will enable you to plan for the future of your business without being limited by a functional scope that is too narrow. Although all these features may not be critical for you at first, they may become so in 3 or 5 years, when your requirements change due to increased business.

Conversely, a solution that is too limited would force you to contact a new supplier quickly to procure a more comprehensive solution, or to seek an additional solution to add the functional components desired, running the risk of developing costly interfaces between different systems.

Finally, the customizable and configurable nature of the chosen solution will be one area you want to study closely. As is the case with modularity, it guarantees scalability and flexibility. Whether you want to reach out to new customers, with new services or products, increase the number of suppliers, or change your processes to be ever more responsive to your market, you will need a solution that you can customize. ODATiO, with a configurable business rules engine and customizable workflows, enables you to define or edit, independently, the management rules to best respond to market expectations and to demonstrate your responsiveness.

 

The right casting: choose a partner rather than a supplier 

A WMS/TMS project is a long-term undertaking, which is why it is so important to choose the right partner to work with. The size of the company and its stability are important factors to consider. They demonstrate a number of years of experience, solutions that have been developed over time, and which have shown their worth with a large number of customers, that you could visit and review. These customers are also the main driving force behind product developments as their feedback leads to updated applications and features. 

Another critical point to consider: the resources and services that the provider, as an integrator, will be able to provide you with. A consulting service can assist you throughout your project: process optimization, solution design, start-up support, workstation ergonomics, etc. Similarly, an integration service that applies an agile and proven methodology will be able to deploy very high-quality solutions while favoring proximity to the customer.

Once launched, training will help you roll out your project. As such, Savoye offers, through its training service, optimal user support for its solutions either via in-person training sessions or virtual classes using e-learning modules.

Support, 24/7 handling, multilingual hotline, etc. The provider must offer a high-quality after sales service and the required corrective actions to resolve all incidents at any time.

All these services require significant resources that only a reliable partner that is both a software publisher and integrator is able to provide you.

 

In conclusion 

A solution that is sufficiently comprehensive, scalable and modular, to support your development and a publisher/integrator partner sufficiently stable and long-standing to support your growth: this is the ideal recipe for a high-performance supply chain execution software project. 

Savoye embodies all these characteristics, an experienced, international leader in intra-logistics, with over 30 years of experience in software and automated supply chain solutions. With over 1000 warehouses equipped with its solutions throughout the world, from the simplest to the most complex logistics organizations, Savoye is the ideal partner to help grow your business.   

 
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