An acronym that is becoming increasingly common throughout logistics and warehouse management is ERP. Standing for ‘Enterprise Resource Planning’, it refers to the digital systems and software that warehouse management, and other companies, use to manage their daily activities. Covering day to day tasks such as manufacturing, stock control and accounting, it integrates the data flow and statistics of the operations, allowing end users to be able to easily access and utilise real-time reliable data regarding the state of their business.
The inner workings of ERP systems are all based around a single integrated database, with streaming multiple data flows from a variety of daily operations, consolidating these flows and producing easy access to this data for the end user. By having a secure and centralised data bank, everyone in the company who accesses the data knows that they are making decisions based on real-time information. Equally, an integrated system with one point of access is far more efficient than multiple data storage areas (which increases the risk of human error when processing figures from multiple databases), as well as being more secure, in that there is only one system which needs to be protected from cybercrimes and to be maintained.
Increased performance and reduced costs
By using an ERP, the advanced technology can help you to increase your performance and productivity, while also lowering your costs. An efficient warehouse is the central point of all distribution and logistics services, so streamlining your warehouse management should be a key priority. ERP allows you to do this in a number of ways:
1. Accurate reporting in real-time
Before making any changes or improvements in your warehouse, it is essential that your reporting is accurate in the first place. Not only does this include current stock levels, but incorporates many wide fields such as financial matters, average productivity and machinery maintenance levels. Having a snapshot of your position at that moment in time allows for comparison when you have implemented your positive changes to see the extent of the effect these changes have made. ERP systems can provide you with accurate reporting in real-time, allowing you to be able to access all essential information as it is processed, with the complete confidence that it is right.
2. Layout changes
There are various ways that warehouses can improve their productivity by just changing their stock layout. By placing your high-frequency stock close to the central processing and picking points results in your staff having to take fewer steps to collect this stock, allowing the packaging time to be significantly reduced. Not only does this reduce the time taken to process items, it allows for greater productivity from your workforce. With ERP managing your stock, you will be able to know which of your stock has a high frequency, allowing you to change your layout accordingly.
3. Stock control
ERP allows you to improve stock control by giving you accurate data on your current levels, as well as forecast data for the next sale period. A greater stock control means that there will be significantly decreased excess stock which ultimately needs writing off due to its obsolete or expired nature, reducing your overall costs. By understanding the stock flow through your ERP system, you can also price stock accordingly, increasing your profit margin.
At WinMan, we pride ourselves on being able to offer warehouses comprehensive and integrated ERP systems, which promote management levels, increase productivity and decrease costs. Contact us today to find out how our system can help your business.