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Warehouse Management Solutions: Embedded or Best-of-Breed

January 19, 2011

As manufacturers and distributors come under rising pressure for faster fulfillment of product orders and outstanding customer service, they increasingly ask the question, “Would a warehouse management system(WMS) help us better manage and automate our warehouse and fulfillment operations?” Often, they are finding that a WMS would, indeed, provide the benefits they seek. Your company may be coming to the same conclusion.

As you begin to examine the various WMS offerings, you encounter the dilemma of whether a stand-alone WMS simply integrated with an ERP solution or a WMS module that is part of a broader ERP suite would be your best choice.

Not long ago, the embedded versus stand-alone WMS decision was made easier because standalone systems generally provided broader WMS functionality than what was found in ERP systems. Fortunately, this is no longer the case. Some leading ERP vendors have closed the gap with standalone systems. In addition to closing the functionality gap, these embedded WMS solutions provide benefits beyond what stand-alone or best-of-breed (BOB) solutions can in terms of integration, the ability to have one vendor relationship versus multiple, an overall lower cost of ownership, and more.


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