Experts in operations and fulfillment agree there is a place for both cloud-based warehouse management systems (WMS) and locally installed warehouse control systems (WCS). This is because the high volume of distribution center traffic, driven by the explosive growth in ecommerce and multichannel distribution, has added layers of complexity to the supply chain.
In this post from Business Excellence, author Thomas R. Cutler talks to experts who say even the most responsive cloud-based WMS can create brief lag times in transmitting information to a high-speed sorting system, leading to delays and added costs.
Cutler notes in the article that a server-based WCS can act as a local agent for the remote WMS, downloading information on what items need to be put away or retrieved from inventory. It then converts the information into the most efficient routing instructions for the sorters, carousels and conveyors that are carrying out the required tasks.
Because the WCS processes data on site, Cutler notes, delays caused by communication disruptions can be virtually eliminated.
You can read the entire article here.