Barcodes and Scanning Processes Used in Warehouse
Distributors understand there is a distinct difference between a simple bar coding system and improving their whole operational process. Still, many ask for just that - a bar code system. Nothing more, nothing less - and this is a mistake. They should be asking questions such as 'How do I automate all of this data? Could there really be a smooth assimilation between Microsoft and operations in the warehouse? How can I improve the cycle from order to cash? From dock to stock'?
Bar coding is simply the means to accurately and efficiently collect data in the warehouse. There are other methods of automated data collection that can benefit distribution operations including pick to light (carousel or carton flow), RFID and Voice. The application of which will depend on the customer operation. And, as a side note, these technologies are not solely used by big companies. Customers with small warehouse operations use these technologies too!
Bringing warehouse related functions of your Microsoft Dynamics solution to a wireless or tethered 'scanning' device can have a large impact on the operation. Many operations will see dramatic improvements in inventory and order shipment accuracy. It's not unusual for our customers to quickly hit a shipment accuracy of 99.9% on average. There can also be a reduction in warehouse-related clerical activity, including goods issue and receipt creation, warehouse transfers and inventory count inputs.
Advances in computing power have now enabled functionality to provide increased time to value for SMB companies implementing supply chain solutions. Functionality like true pick path optimization and order cluster optimization would have been unthinkable five years ago. Complex algorithms that take seconds on today's affordable multi-core processors would have required expensive off-line processing, putting these solutions out of reach for most SMB operations.
'Perfect Pathing' is one technique that can save nearly $80,000, or more, per year for a US based operation with four picking staff. The way it works is is improves efficiency by using X/Y coordinates and batch clusters - effectively showing the correct order to pick stock in order to operate in a more timely matter.
Many warehouse consultants turn to pick-face slotting as a first recommendation for improved performance. Applying spreadsheets, warehouse maps, and a one time slotting recommendation can be costly however. Slotting solutions are well worth it though - simply rearrangement by size, travel, weight or crushability can improve picking by 20-30 percent - providing a return of 110 percent value on a ten percent price. This makes it especially good for SMB operations, as software solutions to do just that can run upwards of $150K to implement!
The distributors who run their own truck fleet know all too well that it is nothing to spend three or more hours per day on tasks like preparing daily routes from static reports, using a calculator or spreadsheet to build to truck capacities, and plugging in deliveries.
Optimizing your warehouse by deploying solutions to route shipments using geo-codes and constraints, can do what used to take hours, in minutes. SMB operations can expect to reduce miles travelled by up 20% or more creating an average return on investment in 3 months or less by deploying these types of solutions.
When considering a bar code solution; also consider that the foundation that you choose can offer a world of possibilities for continuous improvement. By installing strategic warehouse in warehouses with as few as 2 employees can shatter the price performance boundaries as the company grows.
vSync EDI solutions are designed specifically for Microsoft Dynamics GP and Microsoft Dynamics AX. We only support these two EDI systems, therefore our solutions the tightest level of EDI integration available along with the familiarity you're users are used to.