Although warehouse management systems (WMS) vendors do provide training and technical support, WMS buyers can also gain big benefits from sharing notes and advice with other users, says one consultant. Don Benson of WMS Support, who bills himself as the "Warehouse Coach," said he strongly believes in the value of learning from peers' experiences. Benson, who was involved in the early days of WMS development, will be offering a day-long training and "WMS support group" on May 16 in Anaheim, Calif.
A WMS user community that is not tied to a specific vendor is a good way users to help each other get the greatest benefits and efficiency from their software, Benson said. When users bring problems or a wish list to a group discussion, they can work out practical solutions or process changes based on other companies' experiences and successes. This approach is particularly helpful for companies that have seen turnover among their managers who use the WMS—which can result in the loss some institutional knowledge about the software. It is also beneficial when products, processes, and business parameters have changed since the initial installation, Benson said.