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WFM Contributes to the Future of Supply Chain

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WFM Contributes to the Future of Supply Chain

How WFM Contributes to the Future of the Supply Chain Industry

Warehouse workers are in short supply. In Part 1 and Part 2 of this series, we explored the pressures that are bearing down on you today in staffing your warehouse, as well as the kind of relief that workforce management software (WFM) can bring. As we move toward the future, companies need help facing the challenges of the 24/7 ecommerce market. WFM provides benefits to warehouse managers and staff, while ensuring that your warehouse will always be capable of meeting its demands. Discover what may lie ahead for your warehouse and WFM in this final section of this series.

Look at the future – the Campus method

If we’re to imagine what warehouses are going to look like in a few years, based on the trends we’re seeing, a large part of this will be campus-based.  A stand-alone, single warehouse is going to struggle to staff effectively when you take into account the need to respond to consumer habits, the available labor pool, the amount of warehousing that’s going to be necessary, etc.

We’re already seeing 3PLs doing campus-based warehousing. What does this mean and how do you manage and staff that effectively? With automation and software simplifying tasks and roles, that translates into being able to do the exact same thing in multiple locations, making staffing across multiple warehouses much more easily accomplished. The same worker may be assigned to one warehouse on Monday, a different one on Tues/Thurs and a different one on Friday.

AI and ML are going to play a large role as well, predicting what consumers want before they know they want it. It’s already out there, it’s happening.

How can we leverage that in staffing our warehouses effectively and how can we leverage this next step of having campus-based users and users that are able to rotate from building to building and log their skill sets?

Ultimately this is where WFM is going to play a huge role. Warehouses are siloed. That can’t be if we expect to retain good talent and train that talent effectively.

WFM will help companies answer questions like, “How do I employ someone I can only give 12 hours a week to, but next week is 16 and maybe after that its 20?”

What does Workforce Management offer?

Flexibility / Empowerment
We are competing across a larger, wider pool for labor in the warehouse. We want that flexibility and enablement. WFM can give you the power that the tech companies have, the ones leveraging the gig workforce. Consider WFM the gig workforce software for warehousing. Companies are responding to consumer habits. Consumer habits are driving the need for warehouses to be extremely responsive and flexible. This generation wants flexibility and empowerment in their employment. In offering that flexibility to the warehouse worker, we’ll be better positioned to continue to be flexible with serving those consumer habits.

Forecasting / Visibility
Forecasting will give you the ability to create staffing schedules based on statistical data. You’ll be able to reach out to temp agencies for exactly what you need and not overspend. You’ll be able to give visibility to employees for performance, profiles, availability, accruals – all in an app and presented back to you as a manager.

Retention
There are a number of workforce management solutions that tie into Labor and Warehouse Management. You really want a platform that’s going to give you flexibility and compliance and allow you to look at your workforce holistically so you can see associated costs, not just what’s inside the four walls.

Final Thoughts

Are you organizationally ready to handle the type of workforce that you might not even know is available to you now?

Some companies are part of the way there in using temporary workers. Some companies are making use of college students who may be open to taking evening shifts more than the average warehouse worker.

We cannot continue to have 15 – 25% turnover – it’s too costly. As you work through considering alternative types of employees and examining platforms, these things ultimately lead to one goal which is retention of employees by offering them flexibility in a way that works for them – and for you.

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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.

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