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The Advantages of an Open Architecture Warehouse Management System

Warehouse management systems (WMS) have fought the constraints of limited operating systems for years, and the problem persisted with database selection use and upgrading as well. From the 1990’s through mid 2000’s, the AS/400 (aka iSeries or System i) was the system of prevalence, with its built-in OS/400 operating system and DB2 database. As time passed, supply chain executives realized they could spend less by purchasing servers to store data as necessary, but the rigidity of standard operating systems (OS) left warehouses locked into inflexible hardware and without the scalability and advantages necessary to compete in an omnichannel world. Thus, an open architecture warehouse management system became the standard in yard and warehouse management systems.

Enhanced Scalability Through an Open Architecture Warehouse Management System Means Upgrading Is Simpler

Users of WMS can upgrade servers

, databases and other system components when appropriate through open architecture, while preventing disruptions to fill rate, operational efficiency, and capacity. Warehouses have the option of buying new servers when necessary, which work with the existing open platform. Therefore, overall scalability and flexibility increases as warehouse executives have more options for database and OS selection. So, scalability and flexibility could grow at the optimum rate, not something set by a rigid OS or database provider.

Waveless Picking Strategies

Versatile database and OS options with open architecture warehouse management systems can enhance picking strategies.

For example, Manhattan Associates’ Warehouse Management for Open Systems (WMOS) captures e-commerce warehousing stock keeping units (SKU) with bulk allocation and order verification. Warehouses can complete order processes without moving to a forward pick location, while concurrently increasing throughput. Furthermore, reducing time spent on single-order processing leads to decreased labor costs.

Open Architecture Looks and Feels Modern

Powered by an open architecture, today’s WMS uses modern navigation tools, like drag-and-drop, click to drill down, or app and web-based management portals to encourage higher user adoption rates. Replacing the traditional “green-screens” that ran most business systems from the 1970’s, newer systems are user-friendly and visually appealing. Users can get more accomplished and are able to see contrasting data easier.  In fact, user-friendliness is the top consideration when selecting a warehouse management or other supply chain system, says Deborah Catalano Ruriani of Inbound Logistics.

Redundant Data Storage Between Servers Mitigates Data Loss

Most corporations back up their data to protect against database corruption, hardware failures, and even natural disasters.  Without a highly-functioning backup in place, your warehouse could suffer weeks-long delays and loss of production value. New systems use a two-pronged data storage approach, which performs continuous, real-time updating between servers. So, if something does happen, the data stays intact on the other server.

Implement Open Architecture Among Your Systems Today

Open architecture warehouse management systems are essential to success as e-commerce and omnichannel order fulfillment grows. Rather than leaving it up to chance, plan ahead by implementing open architecture-based systems now. Contact Veridian to learn more about how your company can move to open-architecture today.