Tuesday 29 January 2013

WMS supplier selection guide

A new Warehouse Management Systems (WMS) supplier selection guide has been launched by ARC Advisory Group. The guide, in combination with supporting ARC data on the WMS marketplace, a strategic report on the WMS Business Case, and consultant support, will allow companies going through a WMS supplier selection process to make quicker and better decisions.

ARC Return on Investment (ROI) research has demonstrated that WMS solutions often provide the single best solution for reducing the costs associated with distribution while simultaneously improving service. In fact, a WMS can serve as a platform for further savings that would be difficult to achieve without having this solution in place.

Part of the success of a WMS in driving cost savings and service improvements is based upon the maturity of this technology. In theory, this maturity should make supplier selection easier. In practice, WMS solutions exist on a complexity continuum spanning low cost solutions with limits on the depth of functionality provided, to highly functional, much higher cost solutions. Further, different suppliers have developed special domain expertise in specific industries. The potential business benefits and associated payback periods reflect these facts.

ARC STAR – Supplier Selection Service guides users through a step-by-step process selecting and evaluating suppliers and their products against specific application and industry requirements. The process guides the user through the project and team definition, reviewing and editing ARC-provided selection criteria and supplier questions, weighing selection criteria, developing a supplier Request for Information (RFI) list, evaluating supplier responses, and developing a final ranking of RFI results. ARC STAR then fully documents the process and results for management review and approval. ARC STAR helps ensure inclusive, fact-based, impartial supplier evaluations and selections, free of the user bias issues that typically hamper these activities. In addition, ARC estimates that ARC STAR can reduce the cost and effort of a supplier selection process by well over 50 percent.

The selection guide was authored by Steve Banker. Steve has been covering the WMS market, WMS solutions, and WMS suppliers for over 15 years. Steve is one of the best known figures in the field of supply chain management and warehouse management has been a particular focus for him.

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