Proving the Business Case for the Internet of Things

Manhattan keeps momentum with supply chain suite

Steve Rogerson
May 24, 2017
At its annual Momentum customer conference in Las Vegas this month, Manhattan Associates announced a supply chain suite to increase warehouse throughput and help enterprises keep up with the pace of warehouse systems innovation.
The Atlanta, Georgia-based company’s suite includes a focus on warehouse and labour management, and handles logistics management and shipment visibility.
For years, warehouses have driven order processing efficiency by using a wave-based processing method that aggregates order volume and submits it to the distribution centre in organised batches. Unfortunately, in environments where demand can be unpredictable and volatile, this approach can lead to peaks and valleys of activity, as waves are passed from warehouse function to function.
Manhattan Active includes a warehouse management system that embeds an option for waveless order fulfilment technology. This increases asset use and improves facility output, enabling warehouse facilities to process both large shipments and individual consumer orders efficiently. The order streaming part is said to be unique in its ability to optimise both labour and equipment assets, and to work in either wave or waveless modes.
“We believe the most effective distribution facilities will consist of innovative automation, enabled and engaged associates and intelligent software that orchestrates and optimises all of those resources holistically,” said Brian Kinsella, Manhattan’s vice president of product management. “Order streaming is the market’s first waveless outbound processing capability to be embedded directly into a WMS. We’re confident it will help our customers take a massive step forward in increasing the velocity of their outbound operations.”
For example, a major North American retailer doubled its ability to process expedited orders per day during peak season by eliminating picker wait times following the implementation of the order streaming system.
Because warehouse management systems can be complex and process centric, keeping them current is often difficult. As a result, many fall behind the technology curve and struggle to compete with their more technologically up-to-date competitors.
To help solve this problem, Manhattan Associates is introducing the Active WM programme. The annual subscription programme ensures its customers are always using the most current version of its WMS software. Each subsequent version released to that customer comes complete with all the customer’s business-specific extensions, upgraded data, workflows and configurations, as well as extra WMS functionality.
Manhattan also announced TMS Mobile, a mobile app to let its customers connect and engage small to medium sized trucking firms. Part of the transportation suite, the software enables real-time shipment tracking, freight management, shipment status updates and network operations monitoring via an in-cab mobile device.