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By Curt Sardeson, December 8, 2019

… And other Myths of Buying a WMS

Purchasing warehouse management software is a big decision and there are thousands of details for you to review. Demos are helpful, but as we learned in Part One: All WMS Software is Created Equal, sometimes you are shown features that are still in the development stage. In this second part, we continue with dispelling common myths about buying a WMS as it relates to providers because all providers are not created equal.

Myth 5 – This provider offers a turnkey solution. Everything’s included.

The term turnkey is a misnomer. Almost every company will have a different definition of the elements included. Determine what elements you need and which are included or considered an add-on. Make sure you understand:

  • Licensing costs
  • Maintenance
  • Infrastructure
  • Education
  • Facility
  • Implementation
  • Integration effort and cost

Myth 6 – Our enterprise system has a warehouse module that will work for our needs.

Enterprise software companies are experts in financials, not the supply chain. Further, a financial company is never going to build a warehousing module as well as a supply chain company. Often enterprise software is lacking the core functionality, depth, and flexibility that your company needs in a WMS. Ask your potential WMS providers how much they invest in development in the supply chain space. Are they invested in what they are selling? Look at the breadth of what the organization is bringing to the table. What is their vision? More importantly, does their vision match yours?

Myth 7 – The software provider will handle the implementation. We can go on with business as usual.

Many companies get caught off guard and underestimate the amount of work needed from their own team for the software implementation. Generally, you and your external resources will be responsible for two-thirds of the workload in implementing the system. Know exactly what is expected of you and your team and hire an implementation consultant to help.

Myth 8 – The implementation process is the same across all service providers.

Nothing could be farther from the truth. Because the configuration and implementation are the most important aspects of your WMS and key to success, pay close attention during the sales cycle. Finding the right service provider can help guide you through the process and provide a strong foundation for your implementation. Find a partner who:

  • Has implemented the most current version of the WMS you intend to buy
  • Uses a proven methodology for implementations in your industry and delivers projects on time and on budget
  • Conducts mock go-lives during the implementation process, finding potential issues before you go live, and
  • Introduces you to team members that implement WMS. It’s a chance to see and interact with other company representatives beyond the salesperson and will give you a feel for the personalities, skills, and values of the services team.

Final Thoughts

As you embark on the search for a WMS, start the process right by building the right project team internally. This team includes:

  • Warehouse Operations
  • IT
  • Transportation
  • Customer Service
  • Purchasing
  • Production
  • Accounting
  • C-suite
  • An external consultant who can be your expert adviser

Team members should be champions of change. Have honest discussions as a group about current challenges and long-term vision. Do your homework and identify your current and future needs to help select the best solution for your company. Make the best choice for your business today and into the future.

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It’s time to elevate.

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Jeremy Hudson

Vice President of Client Services

Jeremy’s focus is on the products and services clients need to stay competitive. Open Sky Group’s mission is to deliver technology-enabled solutions that allow our customers to achieve more while having the flexibility to adapt to change. Jeremy lives the core values and mission by bringing the best experience possible to our clients. He is an essential member of implementation teams, working alongside clients, and encouraging them to use innovation and best practices instead of customizations for success.

Jason Yantiss

Vice President of Client Services

Jason provides leadership to a variety of teams focused on implementation and integration. With 27+ years of experience holding operational and technical management roles in transportation, billing, and warehousing across a vast array of industry verticals, Jason is adept at driving multiple complex projects, understanding customer needs at all levels of the operation and providing viable solutions. Jason’s resume of 150+ implementation projects include Warehouse, Labor, Transportation, Yard Management and multiple AR/AP Freight Pay and Customer Billing systems. 

Eric McPherson

Vice President of Client Services

Mac works to oversee implementation and integration projects. A former Marine officer and military police officer, he brings over 27 years of supply chain experience, including 11 years at Blue Yonder in both delivery and service sales. Mac is a dedicated, team-oriented professional with a background in business management, professional services, customer service, and supply chain technology. His specialties include sales support, supply chain execution systems, project management, fulfillment operations, distribution operations, and GSA contracts.

Shannon Caflisch

Senior Vice President of Sales and Marketing

Shannon is responsible for the strategy and management of all sales, business development, and marketing programs. With over 25 years of sales experience and 15 years focused in the supply chain space, Shannon focuses on building strong relationships with clients and partners and strives to deliver the right software solutions to help conquer supply chain challenges. Shannon believes in learning by listening to understand clients’ goals, struggles, and what is important to their business to build lasting, successful relationships.

Alan Prillaman

Senior Vice President of Client Services

As Senior VP of Client Services, Alan oversees all consulting services and account management at Open Sky Group. Possessing over 30 years of combined industry and consulting experience, Alan leverages his unique background in IT, logistics, quality management systems, manufacturing and distribution operations, and facility and strategic account management to provide clients with creative resolutions to complex challenges. His core philosophy and passion are to deliver tangible value for and establish long-term trusted partnerships with our clients.

Mike Noble

Senior Vice President of Technology

As Senior Vice President of Technology, Mike leads Open Sky Group’s Managed Services, Software Services, Infrastructure Services, and Information Technology teams bringing 35+ years of experience in Supply Chain Execution and Information Technology. Mike and his teams ensure we maintain the highest levels of customer service in a secure and reliable environment, constantly reviewing and evaluating new technologies, their appropriateness and applicability so we can safely and securely transact our own business – and help our clients accomplish the same.

Chad Kramlich

CEO

Joining Open Sky Group in 2015, Chad, served as Chief Revenue Officer for three years prior to his appointment to CEO in 2022. With over 25 years of experience delivering results for high-growth software and consulting organizations, Chad is leveraging his background in building efficient and effective implementation teams, establishing high-impact services operations, achieving revenue growth, and deepening executive-level client relations to help propel Open Sky Group into a very successful future.