The Pros & Cons of Migrating Your WMS to the Cloud

Warehouse management system (WMS) technology is now available in the cloud delivery model offering a lower cost and reduced risk option. When evaluating WMS providers, it is imperative for every business to understand the total cost of ownership (TCO)—including both direct and indirect costs—of the technology and labor associated with adopting WMS technology.

The scrutiny of new technology projects is continuously growing. Building a business case to justify an investment in supply chain management technology will be hard. Cloud technology can provide a wide array of benefits to your company.

Pros:

  1. The cloud enables more technology at a lower cost. Decrease what your company spends on network bandwidth, electricity, a cooling generator and space by removing on-premise hardware completely. Migrating to the cloud does not require you to buy server hardware that needs to be maintained and upgraded over time. Eliminate your WMS costs on internal resources, training, infrastructure and upgrades with the cloud.
  2. The cloud allows you to switch from a fixed cost capital-intensive business model to a variable cost pay-as-you-go operating expense model.
  3. Lighten your IT’s workload by removing routine software maintenance and scheduled upgrades/patches from their responsibilities. Your cloud vendor will now take on these tasks allowing IT to devote their time to improving the business.

Cons:

  1. Security is entirely controlled by your cloud vendor so while they may promise you that they have far more superior security than your internal policies – you have no guarantee.
  2. Setting up roles to control access to your data is also administered by your vendor.  You will have to map out the roles you want to establish for your employees and the permissions each role will be granted.
  3. Downtime can be a huge factor since your entire system runs on the availability of the Internet. If this was to go down, so would your entire WMS infrastructure. With traditional hardware, you can still access data without an Internet connection. Nothing in the cloud can be accessed without Internet access.

WMS in the cloud provides the means to ensure fast, accurate fulfillment through a directed and optimized workflow. Empower your supply chain department by removing IT from managing their software completely. The cloud reduces risk involved in supply chain technology investment and speeds up your ROI. Determine if this transition will help your company create a clear ROI and meet your business needs.

Author Bio: Farrah Pappa is a Web Editor for Cloud Computing Insights.

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