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The Evolution of the WMS

By david.yarbrough | March 10, 2015 | Blog

Over the years as technology has improved, it has helped businesses become more efficient. Today’s warehouse management systems are a far cry from what they used to be, even just 20 years ago. Understanding the history of the WMS helps us to appreciate today’s high tech warehouse management systems.

Pen and Paper

Back in the day before computers, people had to keep track of their inventory, their sales figures, and everything else using just a pen and paper. This understandably made things more difficult the bigger your business became. Imagine trying to keep track of thousands of products and customers with just paper and pencil, and, eventually, a pocket calculator.

Once computers were invented, things got a little bit easier, but WMS’s were still largely a matter of paper and ink, they could just be typed rather than handwritten. This made things slightly more efficient and helped with readability issues, but the real game changer was when people began developing software that could handle data in a more efficient way.

Excel Spreadsheets

One of the earliest and most widely used software programs for warehouse management was Microsoft Excel and other spreadsheet applications. These suddenly made keeping track of lists and tables a lot easier, and with the built-in mathematical formulas, people didn’t have to spend so much time tallying things up.

Spreadsheets also helped organize information in new and useful ways, but there was still a long way to go. Excel spreadsheets are okay if you don’t have multiple warehouses to keep track of, or if you have a limited number of items in your inventory; they’re still not great, but they’ll work if that’s all you have. But as computer technology advanced, people began to realize the need for software that was specifically designed for warehouse management.

Warehouse Management Systems

Today, we have the WMS, a sophisticated and revolutionary tool that helps businesses operate more efficiently than ever before. SphereWMS contains functions that accomplish the basics, like receiving and put away, but also takes care of things like shipping information, receipts, printing, notifications--all of which is done online and can be shared and accessed easily and instantly by employees, regardless of geographical location or time.

It’s easy to see why anyone with a business would want to invent in a WMS. Sure, you could get by with a spreadsheet system. People did for years. But then we realized that there was a better and easier way to do things. The evolution of the WMS has been truly revolutionary for businesses everywhere.

There are a lot of warehouse management systems out there, but SphereWMS is one of the best and most inclusive, since it covers everything that you do or might do with your business and streamlines it for you. SphereWMS can help you manage your inventory, whether you own a brick and mortar business, or you’re strictly online. We also have a great app that lets you manage and check things wherever you are, whether you’re on a business trip, or in the elevator.

So, if you’re still using something other than our state-of-the-art Warehouse Management System, drop the pen and paper and get updated.