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Top 5 Predictions on the Future of Smart Warehouse Management Systems

Developments in warehouse management systems and enterprise resource planning are really heating up. Long gone are the days of static components in manual tasks that created inconsistencies and delays across the entire supply chain. It’s a function of logistics that is ready and positioned for a digital, smart transformation.

Nexon Asia Pacific /
Business Solutions, Customer Relationship Management

Today’s customers expect that their goods are going to be delivered as expected using flexible and free delivery options that accommodate their lifestyles. This gives rise to the need for transformation in warehouse management systems that are app-driven, on-demand, and mobile.

Logistics and warehouse managers have been relying on legacy systems from older technologies to manage the supply chain. Unfortunately, these technologies are starting to breakdown, and it’s becoming apparent for the end-user.

While the human touch is still very much needed when it comes to warehouse management, their efforts are more helpful elsewhere in the supply chain, particularly in the area of decision-making. Robotics and artificial intelligence are making it safer and faster to manage a warehouse.  It’s for this assertion that we’re focusing on the topic of what future smart warehousing will look like within the context of a comprehensive WMS. There are so many driving forces that are shaping the industry, which makes it difficult for industry professionals to stay on top of what is to come.

The good news is that we have done the heavy lifting for you.

Here are our top 5 predictions on the future of warehouse management systems that every manager and business owner should know:

Robotics and Cognitive Computing Places Importance on People
Over the coming years, we see the physical use of robots being put in place to automate otherwise manual, tedious tasks. This will also be accomplished through robotic software as service applications and services that involve cognitive computing, like machine learning, AI, and ERP integration.

Experts believe that this will make a fundamental difference when it comes to data. This will allow the workforce and human capital to focus on more critical, decision-making activities rather than devote time to manual tasks. When these technologies are combined with cognitive analysis, it gives our most talented people the ability to make decisions on-the-fly.

And if you are concerned that robotics and cognitive computing may scare potential employees now and in the future, don’t be. The use of smart technologies actually empowers individuals to perform better and learn more since they are active in the decision-making process throughout the day rather than merely focusing on manual and administrative tasks.

Predictive Maintenance that Indicates Its Lifecycle
Predictive maintenance is going to save warehouse managers and critical staff members time and money when it comes to their enterprise resource planning system. Imagine robots and computer systems being able 2 manage the maintenance process using predictive technologies that avoid problems from appearing in the first place.

The advent of Web 2.0 and PHP has created a reactive, passive process where we simply wait for things to stop working before we address them. Instead, predictive robotics and artificial intelligence can mitigate these problems before they start.

They can tell organisations and managers what needs to be fixed, upgraded, or maintained, but can also predict when they may reach a failure point. In short, this leads to warehouses the world over deploying proactive and predicted maintenance systems to promote a continuation of services, save time, and generate better margins.

Warehousing On-Demand Aligns with Today’s Climate
Warehousing on demand is another innovative concept that is taking warehouse management by storm. Instead of having the capital requirements necessary to open multiple warehouses and shipping centres, industry players are now able to rent their physical resources.

There are startups and app developers that have created cloud-based platforms which transform the buy and sell sides of the market. Warehouse managers with physical bandwidth available to house additional items are also enjoying the benefits of increased revenue. They accomplish this by leasing and renting out unused space to clients on-demand that range in periods from a few days to multiple years.

While this may seem like a simple concept, it is actually quite transformative. It feeds into this into warehouse managers no longer require the need for regional locations and hubs involved in long-distance delivery and travel. They can now compete at the local and national levels due to these newfound resources and impacts on the accounting/ financial system side of management.

Bar Code Labels Get a 2D Makeover
Over the long run, we see 2D barcodes coming to the forefront of warehouse management and how they are incorporated into their systems. 2D barcodes offer features like photo recognition software, which means that your team members only require a camera instead of specialised technology to interpret the image.

And while this may seem like a non-critical advantage, 2D barcodes can be also be scanned in any direction. That means your people don’t have to spend the extra few seconds to position their arm or object correctly to get a good scan. When you add these few precious moments up over multiple scans and days and years, the savings can be tremendous.

What Does the Future Warehouse Management System Look Like?
As you can see, the future of warehouse management system technologies is looking bright. With improved flexibility and productivity, warehouse managers and owners see a future that reduces time and cost savings. As automation and robots replace the intensive labour roles and monotonous tasks, you are now empowering your team members to focus on areas that actually produce results rather than just administer the business side of things. These technologies may include intelligent robots, plug and play mobile automation, and big data analytics.

As new type developments emerge, we are excited to see the way that it changes and shapes the industry in terms of how goods are shipped stored and received concerning a warehouse in the low supply chain and logistics management areas. It can only stand to reason that we were going to see massive transformations beyond what we can already imagine. We’re excited to see what’s to come.

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