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The Evolution of the Software Layer That Sits Between Automation and Higher-level Warehouse Management

So while the robots drew the eyes at Modex, it’s really the evolution of the software layer that sits between automation and higher-level warehouse management that bears some closer watching. The traditional lines between automation, WCS, and WMS continued to blur at Modex 2018, and there are new vendor offerings coming into the market with advanced analytics that are quite different from the monitoring and reporting typically found within WCS deployments. The need to better manage both labor and machines in digital-age fulfillment centers, along with the intensive piece picking and order cycle pressures that entails, is driving the evolution of this crucial software layer.

Roberto Michel of Modern Materials Handling (MMH) has a wonderful, brief wrap-up of Modex 2018. Robotics & virtual reality were the flashiest, attention grabbing elements at this years trade-show. However, as Michel points out, a system that manages the automated machinery and the human labor is central to a successful distribution. If anything, automation, robotics and virtual reality has added more moving pieces that need to be overseen – and when you factor in the HR requirements and financials… it can be quite overwhelming.

Use the link below to read Michel’s complete article – and remember, with the recent additions to Operations Resource Group team, any requirements you now have for warehouse management and customer relationship management – we are your complete enterprise resource planning ally. We work with you to design a system tailored specifically to your needs and operations.

(read complete wrap-up)

ERP must work harder to build competitive advantage for companies: Steve Murphy

Skimming through some ERP news items, because there is always something new to learn on a Saturday afternoon, I came across this very quick read on The Economic Times website. I was about to move on to more pertinent information since this seemed to be about ERP opportunities and business in India, which isn’t our current core market concentration.

However, something at the end Steve Murphy says caught my eye:

One of the key opportunities for ERP to become far more responsive and useful to its customers is the development of Internet of Things (IoT). In the near future every aspect of a manufacturing and engineering company’s business is set to be revolutionised.

This falls right in line with our methodology for business system consulting and implementation. (Yes; ORG also does the work along with consulting and analysis.)

We embrace the philosophy that eliminating as many middle layers or steps as possible will optimize performance and efficiency in any process.

So much thought seems to get caught up in the “bells and whistles” of ERP, CMS, Warehouse & Distribution Logistics Systems — the automated processes of business systems. However, our years of experience continually reminds us that the real brilliance of automated systems comes from adapting them to business systems already in place; not bending the company and people to the “will” of the program. This is what should be attractive to any company considering ERP opportunities and growth.

As is also stated in the interview, Murphy states, “ERP must work harder to build competitive advantage for companies, serving the user and providing information to the right people at the right time, to take action in the right way.”

Use this link to read Shelley Singh’s brief interview with Steve Murphy.

Learning ERP From Our Neighbors

There are a lot of resources for learning ERP processes: the set-up and other elements important to optimizing performance and efficiency in your business processes management.

Today, we were surprised to read about one of the key elements in learning ERP implementation we continually communicate about with our clients: patience. Careful planning and auditing of the ERP implementation will save time and money in the long run — and give you the automation and organization efficiencies you’ve been expecting with your ERP and CRM systems.

Where did these words of wisdom and insight come from this morning? Hastings, Nebraska.

We tip our (proverbial) hat to Hastings Utility Board members … who are recognizing the benefits of implementing ERP into their business processes, while also recognizing the benefit of patience in the process.


City continues to look for efficiencies

…The city of Hastings continues to implement recommendations included in the Novak Study, the city’s organizational study completed in 2015 by the Novak Consulting Group of Cincinnati.

Several of the recommendations included combining city functions to create more efficiencies.

Stutte said one way to achieve greater efficiencies is to purchase new enterprise resource planning software, which will help departments such as information technology, finance and human resources run more efficiently.

The administrative department capital budget includes $550,000 for new ERP software.

Still, those achieving greater efficiency is a work in progress.

“As much as we would like them overnight, we know they’re more difficult than that,” Schreiner said.

(click here for full article)

ERP: a single database that tracks all things in one place

Yesterday, Sholto Macpherson posted on IN THE BLACK an excellent article about entry level discussions and explorations for businesses exploring moving to ERP systems.

As we all know, with success comes the challenges of growth – and it’s rare that a start-up planned for and implemented systems oriented for larger enterprises. However, a successful business finds themselves needing to consider ramping up to new (for them) technologies to support and streamline their operating processes and management.

This is a great article if you and your management are talking about what is needed to help wrangle all the various departments and management systems that have grown, well, unruly, as you have successfully grown.


Enterprise resource planning: taking the leap

Enterprise resource planning (ERP) companies are winning over business owners by showing how one single database can be used to manage and help automate multiple parts of the business. Read more