A productive, organized and optimally functioning business is the result of using the right management tools. Among these, you can find ERP and WMS. These are two software solutions widely used by many companies to improve their performance. While these two management systems have the common goal of improving business efficiency, they each have their own unique features and benefits. Discover in this article the differences between a WMS and an ERP.
ERP and WMS: what are they exactly?
The fundamentals of good management of a company consist in optimally managing the flow of information within the company and in better manage your warehouse. Regardless of the size of the business establishment or the scope of the business activities, ERP and WMS are intended to promote the development of operations.
Reminder on the definition of ERP
Enterprise Resources Planning (ERP) is also known as Enterprise Resource Planning (ERP). Being a software integrated into the management of a company, the ERP constitutes a program making it possible to organize the services of the company. More specifically, ERP software aims to facilitate the flow of each piece of information within a company so as to streamline all operations. ERP is involved in many functions, namely: purchasing and supplies, finance, logistics, marketing and human resources management.
Reminder on the definition of WMS
The Warehouse Management System (WMS) or Warehouse Management System, is a logistics optimization software. In particular, it facilitates the proper functioning of the warehouse through the planning of all incoming flows, the preparation of orders, the storage of goods, the dispatch and receipt of goods, the control of processes.
ERP and WMS: what are the main functionalities?
To ensure industrial efficiency, it is necessary to have the right software capable of meeting the needs of the company.
ERP, a business optimization tool
As ERP ensures the integrity and accuracy of company data, whether at the level of accounting monitoring or employee management, this system offers consistency in operational processes. Through specialized, programmed and configurable software, it is possible to adapt ERPs to the current organizational needs of a company.
ERP software represents a set of applications with varied functionalities capable of performing many tasks that are both precise and specific.
ERP logistics software covers a large number of areas essential to the proper functioning of the company. For example, being provided with a CRM or a Customer Relationship Management, an ERP takes part in the strategies of management of the relations and interactions of the company with its customers or its potential customers. It manages customer databases, sales data, deliveries, invoicing. An ERP also establishes a detailed history of pre- and post-sales exchanges.
Moreover, an ERP software intervenes in the management of purchases and supplies. The development of a trade activity is based on the availability of the materials used to manufacture the products. Not only an ERP helps in the evaluation of suppliers, but also allows a control of each expense and invoice. At the same time, it offers a planning of production activities. This makes it easier to control the equipment and materials acquired, manufacturing operations, order processing, and above all, the evolution of stocks. ERP plays a key role in warehouse management.
Equipped with finance and accounting modules, ERP software simplifies accounting operations through: control of debtors and creditors, asset and capital management, cash management, cost reduction, monitoring of expense and income movements. Its functionalities extend to project management, including each execution cost, investments or depreciation.
general purpose software
The ERP contains a program dedicated to the maintenance of equipment in order to ensure the quality of the products and the success of the company’s projects. It also offers a solution in the management of the company’s human resources: staff recruitment, training, etc.
WMS, a business management solution
The main functionality of the WMS software is tohelp any warehouse manager or supply chain manager to analyze each movement and identify any source of dysfunction in the supply chain.
Providing an overview of all logistics activities, the WMS covers all areas of the warehouse to ensure the operation and fluidity of the supply chain. These include in particular:
- Receive the raw materials and check the quantity of the stock according to the orders.
- Prepare orders and program alerts in case of stock shortages.
- Schedule each operation (production, preparation of deliveries, respect of shipping deadlines, distribution).
- Audit inventory and anticipate needs during the year.
- Adapt the resources (suppliers, producers, preparers, deliverers or transporters, etc.) to the needs of the company.
A WMS system is a solution with a strong impact on the performance of inventory management and the valuation of resources. For the warehouse manager, it represents a versatile tool, adapting to each working method.
ERP and WMS: complementary logistics tools
Using warehouse management software brings efficiency, flexibility and transparency to company operations. For example, a WMS offers as an advantage:optimization of storage spaces, the analysis of the evaluation of the requests, the reduction of the errors in the inventory, the entries and the exits and the reinforcement of the capacities of preparation of orders. Any company with WMS software can expect increased performance, revenue and customer satisfaction. As for the ERP, it improves the productivity of the teams and offers an overview of the supply chain.
These two software are complementary. The WMS can be integrated with the ERP to work in synergy thanks to a transfer of information. The communication of the WMS and the ERP makes it possible to maximize the performances of a company. A TMS or Transport Management System type software also makes it possible to extend management and traceability activities to the transport level.