When it comes to warehouse management, no one knows your system or your needs better than you do. So it naturally follows that at some point or another you’ve probably had this thought: “How hard is it to build a warehouse management system? I have an IT team on board, and they’re familiar with the business, so we can do it ourselves.”
In that estimation, you would not be incorrect at all. Yes, you can build your own system, but at what cost? Is it the right move for your business? And the most cost effective one? Those are the key questions to ask when considering your best options for a warehouse management system.
Remember, it’s one thing to build an application; it’s quite another to build an application, implement it and maintain it for users across your company. Imagine this: you go to your in-house developer who tells you he can complete such an application within a month and there is no need to pay a third party. Subsequent to this conversation, two things are likely to happen:
- In the first instance, you go back to the developer after the projected time frame passes only to find that it is not yet complete. Why? Because your developer is busy maintaining and keeping afloat the entire company, including fulfilling requests from other employees. It can be easy for projects to get put on the backburner, and maintaining sole focus on your demand means neglecting other duties. In this way, a large window of time can elapse with nothing servicing your business needs.
- Secondly, companies that do successfully build a WMS in a timely manner almost invariably have to contend with unforeseen issues. Just a few possibilities that must be contended with: the additional cost of adding new uses, the input of incorrect data, server backups, protocols for who will bring servers back in the event of a crash or outage and coverage during vacation or sick time.
These issues are not uncommon, and it happens all of the time where I’ll receive calls from companies some six months after deciding to build their own applications. Very often at that point I will hear that their efforts were not progressing as they had hoped, or that the task of managing what they built is more daunting than they had imagined, and so, ultimately, they decided to contact a provider instead of moving forward on their own.
The question then is not can you build your own system, but should you? And further, do you even want to?
Your customers come to you because they know you are the best at what you do, and chances are you earned that reputation by maintaining your focus on what’s important, what’s cost effective for your business, what sets you apart from your competition, and only putting effort into projects that both serve the business and drive income.
I submit that though you can build your own WMS, your efforts are likely better focused elsewhere. The employees at my company live and breathe warehouse solutions because that’s what we’re best at. Our online warehouse management system is cost-effective and comprehensive, and what’s more, we build and maintain every aspect of our customers’ warehouse management systems so they don’t have to.
Given that your business is not moving boxes but managing inventory, consider that having a WMS brings with it controllable, predictable costs, and the ability to serve existing clients and incorporate new clients with ease.
Give me a call today to hear more about SphereWMS’ offerings and find out about our live demonstrations: 866-887-2972.