Did you know? Inventory shrink costs retailers an average of 1.33% of their total sales — something the right warehouse management systems could help minimize.
When it comes to choosing the right software for cold storage warehouse management, you can’t be too careful in your selection. Few industries are more critical than cold storage and warehousing. To minimize health risks and costs as much as possible, your cold storage warehouse management software needs to be the best option for your company.
To help you make a wise choice, here are some strategies to keep in mind when selecting cold storage warehouse management software.
Keep an Open Mind
When searching for a warehouse management system, you should consider a wide array of options. SaaS systems are more affordable than others, but that doesn’t mean they’re the best for you, or that they won’t cost more in the long run. Besides looking at big-name options, be sure to consider off-brand alternatives as well. There are many state-of-the-art software solutions that don’t have a major brand name backing them up. Do your due diligence in research.
Get Buy-In from Users and Executives
Whenever you make a major change or upgrade to any system, it’s important to get the feedback of those who will actually be using the new system, as well as the decision-makers in charge. When you consider a new piece of software, make a list of its features and rate each one according to its level of importance in your company. When you do this, get suggestions and advice from the people working on your warehouse floor, not just managers making the decision.
Specify Your Business Requirements
Not all software is created equal, which is why you list and compare the features of different options. However, as a company, you don’t need all the possible features out there. Enlist an advisory team to determine which features and functionality are most needed in your cold storage warehouse management software. Technical requirements, physical limitations of warehouses, and the limitations of your current resources should all be taken into consideration. Make sure your advisory team has also considered ease of use in their analysis.
Define Your Timeline and Budget
Figure out how much your business is prepared to spend on the new warehouse management software, and make sure your budget is realistic given your needs and limitations. You might consider budgeting for the project in phases conducted over time, rather than trying to acquire all the features and modules you need at once.
Additionally, determine what kind of timeline you need to abide by in this project. If you’re preparing for a really busy season for your company and need the upgrade in place by then, make sure everyone is on the same page. Just like you need a realistic budget, it’s also important to have a realistic and workable timeline.
Evaluate Software Options
Now we get to the critical part. Even though finding and comparing software might be the first thing you think of, the preparatory work is important to make sure this step goes well.
To find software options, you may conduct online research, speak with resellers, contact industry associations, or even hire a consultant. Evaluating software can be a confusing process, so it’s important to have all the help you need to navigate the subject.
When it comes to cold storage warehouse management software, the different systems available tend to have similar features. However, it’s important to recognize that what you’re looking at is not what the different systems do, but how they do it.
While it can be tempting to try and evaluate multiple different systems simultaneously, a better option might be to evaluate different vendors first and narrow down your list of options based on your unique requirements. Viewing software demonstrations from each vendor can quickly become overwhelming, so it’s advisable to keep the number of vendors you consider to five or fewer.
Besides watching vendors’ demonstrations, you should ask for lists of references to check in with their past customers. This will give you a feel for how effectively their product actually works in the real world.
Following these simple strategies should help you make the right choice of cold storage warehouse management software. For more information, contact us now.
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