Logistics Software

Uses for Logistics Software: How the Right Software Can Help You Become the Master of Your Supply Chain

In the past few decades, improvements in computer technology have meant huge advances in logistics. Logistics software has improved efficiency, cut out a lot of busy work, and made for fewer mistakes. How can you use these programs to take your supply chain to the next level? Read on to learn the very basics about choosing the right systems for your business.

Types of Logistics Software
There are several different types of software used in logistics applications. They aren’t limited to the following software programs, but these are the main types.

ERP stands for enterprise resource planning, and this type of software may encompass other types of programs on this list. It’s a more comprehensive type of system that ties in functions across an organization to streamline operations and improve visibility across an organization.

Transportation Management System
Transportation management software helps you get freight from ‘Point A’ to ‘Point B’. It may encompass everything from planning loads to organizing quotes to tracking trucks.

Warehouse Management System
Warehouse management software typically covers the majority of warehouse operations. These programs handle inventory, order processing, and help streamline processes and cut out paperwork.

Routing Software
Routing software does exactly what it sounds like, routes. It helps plan the best, most efficient route to ship freight. This type of software is particularly helpful when a single load is to be split up and delivered to multiple destinations.

Forecasting Programs
Also referred to as planning software, this type of supply chain software helps anticipate and plan for demands by looking at past trends and market data.

Choosing the Right Software
Here are some basic steps to help you find the right software to make your logistics operations easier, faster, and smarter.

  1. Learn about software programs. Research what they’re capable of and what they’ll require from your organization to be successful.
  2. Figure out what you really want from your logistics software. What are your goals? What do you need your software to do? Prioritize what’s most important in your organization.
  3. Begin researching specific software programs. Set up discovery calls with sales representatives. Figure out how the programs will integrate with your current software systems.
  4. Make a list of pros and cons for each potential candidate. Choose the software that will fit into your operations at scale, considering ease of implementation and user-friendliness.

The Cost/Benefit Analysis
Implementing new logistics software can be costly in more ways than one. It can be a big monetary investment, plus it takes time, effort, and you’ve got to re-train entire departments to operate on the new systems.

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Independent research shows that improved supply chain management can yield:

  • 25 – 50% reduction in total supply chain costs
  • 25 – 60% reduction in inventory holding
  • 25 – 80% increase in forecast accuracy
  • 30 – 50% improvement in order-fulfillment cycle time
  • 20% increase in after-tax free cash flows
  • Supply Chain Mapping

  • Review Market Conditions

  • Determine Operational Inefficiencies

  • Outline Opportunities

  • Implement Changes

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