28 March 2023 - 1 Min Read
In today’s E-commerce world, choosing the correct system based on your business needs and operations is critical. Whether you are a 3PL, 4PL, Manufacture, Vendor, or someone starting up a new e-commerce business, it is crucial to understand the different types of systems and which fit you best.
There are hundreds of different systems on the market today. The most key systems you may have heard about our WMS (Warehouse Management System), shopping carts, OMS (Order Management System), ERP (Enterprise Resource Planning), CRM (Customer Relationship Management), etc.
So, how do you choose the right platform tailored for your business? In our experience, it comes down to two primary elements: your role in the supply chain (e.g., warehouse or manufacturer) and the system's primary use. For instance, if you are a 3rd Party Fulfilment warehouse, you will likely look at warehouse management systems rather than ERP systems due to the WMS's features and capabilities.
Of course, many other questions must be considered, but below are some key questions that can help you decide on the correct system.
- What are the startup costs vs. monthly costs?
- What is the ROI?
- How easy is it to connect to the system?
- Will this system improve current processes or increase touchpoints?
- What type of reporting and business analytics are provided?
- What does the startup and training process look like?
- What is the process for adding product enhancements and new features?
- Is this system scalable? How will it handle future volume projections?
- What are the gaps? Does the system have a partner network that can help fill those gaps?
It is critical to understand the selected system's roadmap and interest in enhancing its technology to adapt to current and future market trends. We have heard too many horror stories of companies investing hundreds of thousands of dollars only to realize the system they've selected is not scalable or customizable, forcing them to restart their hunt for a new approach to support their (changing) business needs. It is essential to demo as many systems on the market as possible to understand better what is available and how the system will increase proficiencies within the operations.