As a logistics company specialising in transport and warehousing services, West-Street Carrier Pte Ltd needs to ensure that the right goods are delivered to the right customer at the right time. Established 20 years ago, the firm has built up a steady business. However, to continue delivering efficient service – deliveries that are speedy and accurate – and stay ahead of its competitors, the company recognised the need to move from a purely manual operation to one that harnessed the benefits of IT to better manage its two warehouses, seven fleets of lorries, its workforce and its orders.
At West-Street Carrier, the entire operation – processing and tracking of orders, storage of goods and stock-taking – was performed manually, which gave rise to inevitable inaccuracies and inefficiencies with the heavy reliance on manpower, the unavoidable duplication of job processes and the time wasted as a result.
Preparing for an order to be shipped required the time of two staff members. The company storekeeper manually checked the ordered items to a printed list and passed the information to an office clerk to enter the data to generate a report. The potential for errors was doubled as either party could record the information wrongly, resulting in an incorrect or incomplete delivery, and ultimately, an unhappy customer. To counter the possibility of error, an additional checking procedure was put in place that took up even more time and resources.
Other challenges faced included the time spent locating goods to be shipped in the warehouse. With no automated system in place, the company was often at the mercy of the memory of the storekeeper and significant time was wasted on a daily basis searching through stock.
West-Street Carrier turned to the services of Boon Software to propose a solution that would boost productivity of operations, reduce operational costs and result in faster, accurate deliveries and greater throughput of orders per day, all without the need for lump-sum capital expenditure. Symphony WMS-Cloud, a cloud-based warehouse management system, fit the need perfectly.
Hosted on Amazon Web Services (AWS), Symphony WMS-Cloud delivers is a subscription-based Software-As-A-Service (SaaS) designed to simplify infrastructure management, allowing businesses to deploy more quickly at lower cost without reliance on complex software and hardware management.
With no procurement, installation or maintenance of hardware or software required, Boon Software was able to deploy and maintain Symphony WMS-Cloud for West-Street Carrier in a secure environment on the public cloud, and take care of security, availability, performance, backup and upgrade issues automatically.
In terms of immediate cost savings, the cloud-based solution allowed West-Street carrier to manage costs by spreading out expenses through an affordable and scalable monthly subscription-based model, saving the business an estimated SGD$25,000.00 of investment on hardware servers and an estimated $2,500 per month on IT personnel to manage the servers and ensure continuous data availability.
Removing the need for West-Street Carrier to invest up to an additional SGD$50,000 on physical Business Continuity Management (BCM) fail-safes was an added boon. Symphony WMS-Cloud provides an effective BCM solution at no added cost simply because it is hosted on the cloud. With no physical servers to worry about, and therefore no risk of data being lost to hardware failure or accidental fire, West-Street Carrier has the full assurance of 100% uptime and business continuity 24/7, with access to information any time from anywhere with an Internet connection.
In terms of operations, Symphony WMS-Cloud has revolutionised the business. Orders are now fully automated, reducing errors; data entry needs to be done only once, reducing time spent in the shipping preparation and inventory monitoring processes; and staff are freed up to spend time on more mission critical areas of the business.
Items for delivery are now easily traced in the warehouse using barcode-scanning devices and inventory control is fully automated, making inventory management more cost efficient and freeing up warehouse space in the process.
The business can now measure its productivity with the aid of Symphony WMS-Cloud’s real-time operational dashboards and over 100 standard reports, allowing the business to track KPIs in all aspects of its business operations.
The integrated Symphony Mobility Module allows West-Street Carriers’field operators to print shipment barcodes on the go and close each delivery job electronically using the associated app on any Android tablet. West-Street Carrier can therefore track the completion of each delivery and allocate its field resources to other deliveries as needed for greater efficiency and customer service.
In short, Symphony WMS-Cloud has exponentially increased business productivity for West-Street Carrier now that the business is fully managed at the simple touch of a screen.