Although a WMS was used widely in larger organisations where food and drink stock and order volumes demanded high levels of control, there was still a need for similar systems in smaller warehouses as they faced the same problems when handling physical stock, according to the company.
“Smaller companies tend, initially at least, to use products designed for stock control or inventory management – modules often provided as part of accounts or ordering systems,” said ProSKU marketing director Alex Mills.
Suit smaller stock quantities
While these could suit firms with smaller stock quantities and order volumes – where physical stock was easy to manage – as a business grew, it became riskier to rely on such a system, Mills claimed.
“If a business needs absolute stock accuracy, it is going to need a system that controls stock in the ‘physical’ sense or at least be integrated with one that does,” he added.
“As well as knowing how much stock there is, this can also mean, for example, where it is located, whether it is accessible, how old it is, its weight, size and so on.”
According to Mills, typical problems included: too much time processing a goods receipt; too many manual systems or software applications to update; time wasted looking for space for goods at receipt; space optimisation problems; poor traceability of stock; and errors in despatch.
“Now that cloud-hosted subscription-based systems like ProSKU are available, there are few reasons not to use an intelligent solution to tackle these problems,” Mills argued. “The monthly cost is likely to be minimal compared with total labour and operating expenses, and will pay for itself rapidly in all but the smallest operations.
“With open application program-ming interfaces, integration with existing software to capture orders and provide accurate real-time stock data is quick and easy to put in place.”