The challenge: rising to meet today’s changing logistics

The role of the warehouse is changing. No longer just a big space to store inventory, today’s warehouse operation is fast-paced and often decentralized.
Inventory turns faster than ever as retailers and manufacturers try to keep up with consumer expectations in this ‘need it now’ culture. Operating across multiple channels — retail, catalog and Internet — creates a new set of logistical challenges. Customers expect to be able to place an order through any one of those channels and either receive overnight delivery to their home or business, or pick the order up at their local store the next day. 

In order to manage the increase in the volume of smaller, individual orders that must be accurately picked and shipped out the same day, warehouse operations need to be incredibly agile.

Wholesalers and third party logistics (3PLs) are also impacted by the increase in volumes. In order to maintain the contractual requirements defined in their Service Level Agreements (SLAs), they must find ways to improve efficiency while maintaining margins. And as increased demand ripples up the supply chain, supporting just-in-time practices can present new challenges for suppliers.
To compete in this dynamic environment, today’s warehouse must be proactive and responsive. Regardless of how many distribution centers they have, and whether products are in the warehouse, in transit or in a factory anywhere in the world, manufacturers need visibility into the entire supply chain. And accuracy is more critical than ever: in a hyper-competitive market, anything less than perfection in order fulfillment can result in a lost customer.

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