Extreme requirements for flexible warehouse management with 3PL
Providers of 3rd Party Logistics should, in principle, be prepared to wipe the slate clean and reorganise warehouse management every single morning. The requirements for rapid, flexible, adaptable and transparent warehouse management that is able to deliver value added services are not for children and delicate souls. And that is precisely why Consafe Logistics has developed a dedicated WMS for players in the 3PL sector.
The lifeblood of 3PL providers is their ability to be their customers extended logistics arm that is able to handle the flow of goods and the associated information on their customers behalf. This imposes somewhat extreme requirements on the IT management of the 3PL company’s warehouse activities.
"The ramp-up capacity and warehouse conditions of players in the 3PL sector requires genuine overview and a resource management system that is able to optimise and adhere to agreed times and other special requests the customer requires from their logistics partner," explains Stefan Oldenburg, VP Warehouse & Distribution, Consafe Logistics, adding:
"We have more than 20 years’ experience in providing WMS for all types of industries, including numerous transport and logistics companies, for example, Schenker, Bilspedition Cargo Center Sweden, Linjegods Logistikpartner, TNT, Nor-Cargo, Maersk Logistics/Damco etc. We can see that a dedicated WMS for 3PL that is flexible and can be integrated quickly with new customers can provide huge competitive advantages for 3PL companies. Consequently, we have developed a version of Astro WMS that is dedicated to the demanding working conditions of 3PL companies."
The warehouse management requirements in 3PL companies addressed by Astro WMS cover, for example:
- Quick and easy hook-ups with customers by means of either EDI, a web-based interface or direct integration whereby the customers can place orders in the way that suits them best. It should also be easy to continually expand the hook-up with new functionalities.
- Tools to give customers transparency in all activities, such as, Track & Trace, order flow, stock status, SLA, Customer Service, KPIs etc.
- Management of countless different parallel flows, for example, chilled/frozen, dry goods, pallet goods, mini loads etc.
- Cross-docking functionality so that the contents of 1 vehicle can be reloaded quickly on to eight local vehicles – this requires so-called yard and dock management.
- Management of value added services such as packaging, labelling, marking, repackaging, handling of returned goods etc..