Axional Mobile WMS
A Mobile Warehouse Management System (WMS)
Axional Mobile WMS is a warehouse management system (WMS) that allows real-time control, management and automation of the processes involved in the handling of items from entry to shipment.
The best communications technology (RF, Wi-Fi, 3/4G) is used to maximize warehouse operational efficiency through proactive management, thereby fulfilling supply requirements and customer needs as quickly and efficiently as possible. It is easily adaptable, which allows the flexible updating of business processes through configurable workflows.
This module is integrated with Axional ERP/WMS, forming a complete solution for warehouse management. This solution optimizes each one of the operational steps and minimizes work for staff responsible for executing logistics steps, from reception planning to shipment. It makes warehouse tasks more agile and streamlined, allowing best performance on order delivery.
Operations are always managed in real time, ensuring that work is carried out according to the most efficient start-up sequence. The system is designed to operate on different technologies: classical RF terminals, mobile devices (Wi-Fi, 3/4G) and voice systems.
The system provides all information in real time, using automatic identification systems connected to radio frequency or mobile terminals.
The system is designed to provide service to both one’s own warehouses and external logistics operators. In the latter case, operators can automatically bill their customers for all tasks performed.
It supports the combination of different types of storage, regardless of whether these storage procedures are dynamic, based on manual handling, robotic, or a mixed system that combines several technologies.
Its technology enables the complete integration of operations from the warehouse to other ERP areas using market-standard protocols. This makes it a fully integrated platform across which unique data is shared between the warehouse management system and other areas of the company, without the need for complex systems interfaces
The Axional Mobile WMS includes the latest innovations in warehouse management and deploys complete task optimization technology, featuring the most efficient algorithms. It can manage any logistics platform taking advantage of RF technology, mobile devices, standalone paper documents or mixed systems, incorporating different scenarios: either internal use or external logistics platforms or cross-docking facilities.
It also has mechanisms to manage warehouses in duty-free areas, free or mixed ports, and it integrates customs clearance as well as allowing the generation of many documents for export and the foreign trade sector as well: cargo manifests, customs tariff, notices, etc.
The system eases the automation of warehouse processes through radio frequency/mobile devices, from the reception of goods to their shipping and the delivery of information to the end customer. It includes the processing and management of docks, with the allocation of loading gates and organization of personnel.
These automatic processes include optimization algorithms for operator routes, warehouse forklifts, and task creation for relocation and placement consolidation, thereby maximizing available warehouse space. It also allows for permanent inventory planning, whether rotating, scheduled or due to unforeseen issues.
Stored materials can be classified by many categories, such as: available for sale, quality control pending, inventory breakage, location pending, etc.
Its real-time operational approach allows instant confirmation that each task performed by staff is correct, providing a full survey of the movements of each operator and his/her specific productivity.
- Control of receiving features (check sell-by date, batch, weight, format, etc.).
- Optimum allocation of storage space according to multiple location algorithms.
- Receiving process optimized by RF, mobile or voice devices.
- Cross-docking or exchange on docks. Direct assignment of forecasted incoming and outgoing goods, reducing the need for handling and storage resources.
- Returns processing.
- Quality control and ISO standards.
- Integration with robotic storage.
- Calculation of optimum warehouse movements.
- Smart picking by area or proximity to docks.
- Wave picking (order picking in phases/waves).
- Automatic restocking orders for picking locations.
- Perpetual inventory, by way of confirmation of inventory by location.
- Preparation, picking report, and shipping processes.
- Treatment of complex items or kits.
- Determination of standard times for storage tasks.
- Control of shipment preparation time and other warehouse duties.
- Statistics and monitoring of operations by operators and terminals.
- Real-time task reassignment, adjusting resources to circumstances.
- Optimization and dynamic prioritization of tasks.
- Unified management of the warehouse, without the need for separate processes or compartmentalized areas.
One of the most advanced features of Axional Mobile WMS is the integrated use of mobile devices (Android) for warehouse management. Centrally-defined warehouse processes can run with a native interface from mobile or tablet.
Taking advantage of the mobile form generator, even non-specialists can generate displays and workflow circuits, deploying them in traditional radio frequency environments as well as Android tablets, where designs are deployed as native applications, improving user experience and enhancing processes with the incorporation of new graphic elements.
This functionality also allows you to handle specialized warehouse management problems, in-store customer service, or act as an element that lets the organization provide applications with a GUI.
All warehouse management functions are available in Axional Mobile WMS:
Manages the receipt of goods from suppliers or from customer returns in any workplace scenario.
Based on the issue of purchase orders, the system informs the inventory and sales systems of pending inbound stock. The user also has a system for inbound planning and allocation of goods in transit, based on delivery times and unloading docks.
Before the goods arrive at the warehouse, deliveries can be controlled through receiving units comprised by a carrier’s set of delivery notes and packages.
During the process of receiving goods, labels are printed for each container received, which allows track-and-trace package control for goods in transit. Being able to perform these verification tasks through RF/mobile or by voice leads to error reduction when locating stock
With the generation of identifiers for each type of container, stock can be placed in the delivery area waiting for the inbound system to offer the best location to place each container, according to the algorithms assigned to goods in process:
- Stock count with inbound controls (sell-by date, batch weight, format, etc.) and automatic deployment of an incident workflow should there be a shortage or merchandise in poor condition.
- Choice of the most appropriate location during the inbound process, using multiple location and optimization algorithms for warehouse space.
- Guided receiving (automatic placement) to improve the distribution of warehouse space, manage the automatic preparation of picking orders, and take into account the properties of each item (sell-by date, FIFO, status). Thanks to this, the best route is created inside the warehouse for optimization of time and resources.
- Returns processing. Work order assignments directed by the control system direct stock counts, evaluation, exchange, disposal, and other treatment of returned products.
The system also supports a cross-docking functionality, i.e., the direct allocation of inbound goods to their forecasted shipments, thereby reducing handling and storage needs.
The system’s technical architecture also facilitates integration with storage systems and automated carousel systems. To do so, it is equipped with mechanisms that issue receipt and picking orders and transfer master data, as well as the remaining data interfaces required.
The inbound process includes integral quality control. It is also possible to preestablish settings by product and supplier, should stock need to be automatically blocked upon the arrival of goods.
It can also manage blocking status related to any container, item or location, including total or partial quantities, and reporting the reason for each blocking action.
Stock remains blocked pending quality control and remains unavailable to any other process.
The unblocking of stock can be done manually, automatically, or via the quality review process.
Inventory management provides real-time visibility of all operations in progress, as well as those pending execution. Furthermore, it has a control system that optimizes the monitoring, movement, handling, storage and, if necessary, the removal or blocking of products.
Highly configurable, it can be adapted to the needs of each client. It provides the technology and experience to effectively manage inventory, increasing overall performance and reducing costs.
Stock is recorded and managed by taking advantage of many features such as:
- Batch number and sell-by date
- Registry of weight and volume
- Serial number
- Controls on temperature or hazardous materials (flammable, corrosive, etc.)
- Stacking limitations
- Logistical variables
- Complex items or kits
- Shrink-wrapping parameters and features for organizing pallets.
The system offers complete track-and-trace control in warehouse product management. It achieves this through advanced design of key logistics operations, including a record of all movements, batch control, sell-by date monitoring, best-before dates and serial numbers. It also supports the use of logistical variables to track and manage storage units.
Product labeling and packaging
Information is produced in the form of bar codes for agile item identification, packaging and location within the warehouse. Furthermore, all labels can be customized to fit the most efficient format in each case.
Label types include:
- Receiving area pallet, in order to provide trackability for each package received
- Shipping area pallet (single or multiple pallet)
- Management of outbound goods or waybills
- Consumer item
The built-in features of Axional Mobile WMS allow for the organization, planning and control of the assembly of warehouse stock.
To accurately reflect stock status, stock can be classified into logistical accounts, which depict status within the cycle of supply and distribution as well as the condition of materials (damaged, retained, available for allocation, ready to be sent, etc.).
Axional Mobile WMS has a system of rules and flows that can be adapted according to multiple criteria. This helps prevent the dispersal of goods across the warehouse, optimizing operations.
Some of the major characteristics of the stock management system are:
- Management of multiple warehouses and companies.
- Tracking, ensuring full control of every product stored, and the ability to view past records on any product to check their movements.
- Types of locations (storage, picking, mixed, dynamic picking, multi-reference picking).
- Map of locations by premises or warehouse.
- Management of stock deposited by customers or suppliers.
- Proposed placement and picking based on LIFO, FIFO or FEFO.
- Fixed or random locations, with allocation of characteristics such as goods measurements and limitations of use or sharing for each location.
- Weight and volume control.
- Stock management in multiple units of measurement.
- Suggested restocking of a picking location.
- Ability to manage information in EAN-14, GS1-128, DUN-14 codes.
- Management of multi-product or mixed pallets.
- Support for warehousing systems based on storage stacks or carousels, thereby automatically managing package placement.
- Definition of the features of each warehouse location: measurements, limitations on usage, sharing, etc.
The system supports the definition of all kinds of areas, including:
- Physical storage areas
- Storage work areas
- Physical picking areas
- Picking work areas
- Dock areas for loading/unloading
- Proposed loading docks according to delivery route
Placement algorithms and route calculations include several optimization criteria:
- Optimization of routes taken in the warehouse.
- Optimization of space (volume occupied by the pallet at its location).
- Proposed restocking of smart picking locations.
- Relocation of products to bring them closer to their picking location.
- Consolidation of locations to improve the amount of free space.
- Possibility of carrying out both inbound and outbound processes simultaneously.
- Cross-docking management to avoid storing products that should be shipped out immediately.
Optimization of restocking by taking advantage of operators’ routes.
- Different replenishment levels according to location.
- Automated system for continuous or manual restocking.
Axional Mobile WMS provides full monitoring both at source and destination by batch, logistical variable, serial number or item for storage units.
Using radio frequency or mobile devices allows the maintenance of a perpetual inventory system. However, if so desired, the system has several procedures for stock count cycles, which can be set by the storage area, product type or family, ABC analysis, type of packaging, etc., interspersing stock tasks with daily activities.
Cyclical inventories may be partial or total, allowing the blocking of locations for inventory and the implementation of different types of detailed inventory: blind, guided, by confirmation.
All operations update the stock count instantly, allowing real-time inventory analysis. The use of warning systems allows the creation of reports and alerts for the efficient management of inventory and critical warehouse situations.
For those warehouses or logistical centers that may handle part of their operations manually or by forklifts, Axional Mobile WMS provides the ability to use radio frequency terminals, mobile devices and voice systems combined with traditional paper procedures. It also provides for the progress of warehouse activity with RF or mobile devices operating offline in case of failure in the communications system.
Furthermore, it also allows the combination of different types of warehousing: dynamic storage, blocking, manual, multi-level or forklifting. In all types of warehouses, the correct execution of processes is guaranteed.
The real-time visibility of the execution of tasks across the whole warehouse and in the supply chain allows instant response to events, analyzing trends and detecting and anticipating bottlenecks.
The advantages are clear:
- Capacity for staff planning and simulation of an order’s progress.
- Assisted configuration by dialogs of the warehouse map or layout, storage areas, etc.
- Assisted configuration via forklift guidance dialogs (routes, authorized zones, authorized loads, height of location, etc.).
- Calculation of incentives according to operator performance.
- Determination of standard times for storage tasks/time-on-task statistics.
- Control of order preparation time, etc.
- Multiple storage capacity.
- Full cross-docking functionality.
- Capacity to issue labels and read GS1-128 codes, as well as transferring their values to the corresponding attributes.
The system has multiple preconfigured processes, both for warehouse management and commercial management, including:
- Closed-circuit monitoring of operators and tasks
- Inbound goods
- Storage and location
- Inventory checks
The system ensures that all tasks are assigned and executed in the appropriate sequence, while workloads and orders are balanced to maximize efficiency and quality of service.
Orders are assigned automatically to the most suitable operator according to the optimum route around the warehouse, capacity, current location, operator activity level and workload.
The system continuously optimizes the picking sequence, based on the real position of products within the warehouse, sending instructions to mobile data or voice terminals.
Flexible definition of processes
Designed with flexibility in mind, the flows and screens of the RF/mobile system can be created or modified from a centralized graphic environment without the need for advanced programming knowledge and without complicated launch or update mechanisms.
As the warehouse management system is completely integrated into the ERP, processes controlled by mobile devices that go beyond the warehouse’s functions can be defined, allowing their integration in RF circuits corresponding to other ERP modules.
From order processing to delivery confirmation, Axional Mobile WMS optimizes each step of shipping operations to guarantee precision, punctuality, efficiency, compliance and service.
The main functions include:
- Variety of picking methods. An unlimited number of picking procedures and workflows can be implemented simultaneously.
- Packaging and shipping. The packaging process is run by the system with the distribution of packages, quality control verification, package assembly and management.
- Shipping documentation. The system generates shipment labels and required documentation to satisfy legal requirements or customer needs (certificates, technical specs, etc.).
- Merging and task management. Allows the assignment of the most efficient tasks for the work, with task entry integrated into and controlled by RF or voice.
- Picking consolidation by delivery routes or destinations (wave picking).
- Package declaration. Online labeling of packages and management of shipping units and schedules, with the identification of stops and packages.
- Invoicing of logistical services. Followup on logistical activities calculates spending to allow for invoicing and analysis.
- Operators’ master data, employment data, personal data, studies, etc.
- Profile allocation, with the aim of determining which operations can be carried out.
- Optimization of operators and tasks to achieve maximum productivity.
- Optimum management of operators’ location within the warehouse, preventing the overlap of more resources than permitted in a single aisle or zone.
- Control panel for manual task assignment: stacking onto pallets at receiving area, location, picking, restocking, inventory tasks, etc.
- Dynamic task reassignment due to delays in picking, restocking needs, modification of priorities, etc.
- Online followup and control of productivity.
- Management incentives for packages handled.
Invoicing of associated warehousing and logistical services:
- Invoicing based on a series of parameters (by period of time, by M3 occupied, by merchandise handling, etc.).
- Automatic invoicing can be customized for each customer, such as payment method, discounts, tax deductions.
- Invoice accounting, tax records and notification of accounts receivable.
The system is integrated with the transport fleet management module, either for the company’s own fleets or subcontracted fleets. This module has the following functionalities:
- Management of shipping/pick-up routes.
- Picking consolidation per delivery route or destination.
- Transport expense control: price list management and self-invoicing, both for internal and external carriers.
- Invoice reconciliation and verification of transport rates applied.
- Management of shipping units. Proposed units based on volume and freight characteristics.
- General management of hazardous materials regulations (ADR, IMDG, IATA).
- Truck load control (both inbound and outbound).
- Fleet GPS tracking. Position tracking, route location, status of delivery, etc. through the use of Axional Mobile.
Besides being entirely integrated with Axional ERP, EDI protocols are also available to permit integration with external systems and optimization of staff resources.
Through EDI systems, the availability and reliability of data is improved along with company resources needed for processing.
The EDI messages implemented in Axional WMS are:
- ORDERS: order shipping and receiving
- DESADV: shipping and receiving notes
- INVOIC: shipping and receiving invoices
- SLSRPT: receiving sales
- STOCK: stock shipping and receiving
To ensure that the setup of a warehouse management system is a success, it must be capable of adapting to the range of business systems involved.
Axional Mobile WMS is able to integrate with any system, using different methods of data exchange in several formats: CSV, TCP/IP and ODBC, supplying connectivity between the WMS itself and the client’s external systems.
Furthermore, it can integrate itself with automated or robotic storage systems or weighing systems, becoming a natural extension of one’s own warehouse management.
The Axional Mobile WMS solution grants your company benefits in a variety of areas:
- Real-time information with a wide variety of management and administration capabilities, designed to improve workflow and procedures.
- Improvement in the accuracy of inbound goods, stock counts and stock picking.
- Mechanisms to ensure the availability of materials, while simultaneously minimizing stock levels.
- Efficient workforce management and operator resource planning, empowering customer service and overall warehouse productivity. Provides support for changing distribution agreements, multi-position operations, and increases in the number of goods received and shipping orders.
- Allows the definition of system resources such as equipment, workers, work teams and their availability, all in order to establish flexible management rules. The result is the optimization of productivity, resources and customer service.
- The use of mobile terminals on site to manage location, picking, restocking and removal tasks in a warehouse. Mobile helps to minimize unproductive times and allow proactive operation management.
- Unified data between the warehouse management system and the rest of the ERP. Simplifies administrative work, improves productivity of operators and resources.
- Complete trackability of all operations from the moment of receiving a product to its shipment, offering high-level service to customers.
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