The Pandemic has Complicated the WMS Procurement Process
This article first appeared in Supply Chain Dive July 2020 issue. Author: Matt Leonard, featuring interviews with Gartner, Forrester and Open Sky Group
Procuring and deploying a Warehouse Management System (WMS) has always been a face-to-face process, but with the COVID-19 pandemic it has challenged WMS experts to think differently and learn how to navigate the process remotely. In Supply Chain Dive’s article, “The Pandemic has Complicated the WMS Procurement Process,” Matt Leonard interviews Dwight Klappich, VP analyst at Gartner, George Lawrie, VP and Principle Analyst at Forrester and Jeremy Hudson, Director of Consulting Services at Open Sky Group to gain insight on the future of the WMS market and how companies are adapting to the new normal.
Transitioning to FaceTime
Since March, Jeremy and his team have worked on three WMS projects, facing challenges, like:
- Touring the client’s facility to understand their complexity level
- Breaking up the monotony of all-day video calls
- Providing on-site and remote support
- Navigating product ramp-up during go-live
Fortunately, Jeremy and his team were able to overcome these challenges by learning how to navigate the remote environment.
“It’s been as simple as they’ll FaceTime my support resource and literally be showing them what the screen looks like in front of them. As simplistic as that sounds, it’s ‘here’s the RF gun in my hand, right? The mobile unit that I’m scanning the product with, why does that say this?”
Using FaceTime, screen sharing, virtual whiteboards and a little creativity, have allowed Jeremy and his team to continue moving the project forward and provide the client with the knowledge and support they needed for their project.
Can a WMS Provide Support?
Yes, social distancing and wearing the proper personal protection equipment (PPE) is important to the health and safety of your employees and your WMS can aid in your efforts to keep them safe. Within the article, Jeremy explains a few of the ideas that clients have asked for their WMS to do, like:
- Ask about PPE upon log-in
- Limit the number of workers in each section to aid in social distancing
Jeremy and his team have been able to configure the WMS to accommodate things like this and help keep employees safe. Many companies anticipate continuing to need these kinds of features in the future.
To read the full article, visit Supply Chain Dive (NOTE: this website may require registration to access the full content).