Warehouse management software cloud

Cloud Warehouse Management: Everything you need to know

Imagine this: a client has confirmed a project, and you are tasked with providing all the necessary equipment and crew for an event. The equipment list is set, the team is assembled, and now it's time to round up all the needed gear. 

At this point, your warehouse staff takes over and decides to make some convenient additions to the planned equipment, handwriting down the changes on the equipment list. However, as is often the case in a hectic warehouse, that crucial piece of paper is nowhere to be found when it's time to send out the invoices. Sound familiar?

Now, you have no idea what changes were made, no way to tell which equipment is in or out. This leaves you facing potential shortages, and unable to calculate losses; ultimately, you are wasting both time and money.

This is where Cloud Warehouse Management tools come in, especially those designed with your specific industry workflows in mind. They significantly reduce the risk of human error. In this article, we’ll guide you through the what, why, and how of warehouse management software:

1. What is a Cloud-based Warehouse Management System?
2. What are the Four Types of Warehouse Management Systems?
3. What are the benefits of a modern cloud-based warehouse management system?
4. What are the disadvantages of Cloud-based Warehouse Management Systems?
5. Find the right fit


What is a Cloud Warehouse Management System (WMS)?

A Cloud-based Warehouse Management System (WMS) might sound like an industry term you've heard tossed around, especially if you've spent some time in the logistics or supply chain sectors. But let's break it down for those of you who are either new to the scene or are in the midst of scaling their business.

So, what is a Cloud Warehouse Management System?

At its core, a Warehouse Management System is designed to streamline and enhance the operations within warehouses.

These systems are crafted to manage inventory, optimize storage and retrieval processes, and improve the efficiency of order fulfillment. But that doesn’t mean it’s a one-size-fits-all! Most Warehouse Management System solutions are versatile, created to serve a broad range of industries rather than catering to specific market niches.

Stressful warehouse management


Four Types of Warehouse Management Systems

Now that you know what a Warehouse Management System entails, let’s break down the four main flavors you can choose from - depending on your business size, needs, and how high-tech you want to go. Ready to find your perfect match? 

  1. Standalone WMS: Ideal for small to medium businesses that need simple, effective warehouse management without extensive integrations. These WMS focus on basic warehouse operations, like inventory management and order fulfillment.
  2. Integrated WMS: Part of a larger software suite, these systems offer seamless integration with ERP and CRM solutions. This means they provide a comprehensive view and management of multiple business operations - beyond the warehouse. 
  3. Supply Chain Modules: This solution is great for when you’re playing a bigger game and need to see the whole playing field. As components of a broad supply chain management system, these modules extend warehouse management to include advanced supply chain functions, such as planning and transportation management. This is ideal for complex operations needing a cohesive solution for the entire supply chain. 
  4. Cloud Warehouse Management: a cloud warehouse management system offers flexibility, scalability, and remote access to data: everything is stored online, in the cloud. This makes them a fit for businesses with multiple warehouses or locations that need real-time data, or for those looking to reduce IT infrastructure costs. No need to be physically present at the warehouse or carry around piles of paperwork. It’s all available at your fingertips, whether you’re using a computer, a tablet, or even your phone.


What are the benefits of a modern cloud-based warehouse management system?

So, you’re curious about the Cloud and how it can transform your warehouse from chaos to a well-oiled machine? Spoiler alert: these benefits are going to make you wonder how you ever managed without it.


1. Pack and track efficiently

A crucial advantage of Warehouse Management in the Cloud is efficiency without sacrificing accuracy. Your crew can simultaneously access and update a single digital packing slip, which eliminates the need for physical paperwork. As soon as an item is marked as prepped, it's instantly visible to everyone. 

Additionally, many systems include scanning capabilities. This means items can be quickly scanned in and out, whether individually (via serial numbers) or in bulk. Implementing QR, barcodes or RFID tags on equipment enhances tracking precision, which creates a detailed rental history per item.  


2. Keep information centralized and up-to-date

The primary risk with paper-based systems is outdated information. A Cloud Warehouse Management System eliminates this by centralizing data; updates made by any team member are immediately reflected and visible to all. So, no more confusion over handwritten updates on paper lists or the hassle of distributing new versions! 


3. Work everywhere, anytime

Here comes the main benefit; all of it can fit in your pocket. Cloud Warehouse Management on mobile devices empowers staff everywhere. Operations can be managed faster, whether in the warehouse or on the field. 

For example, if a microphone is damaged during an event, the issue can be logged immediately via a smartphone. This quick reporting means you can act quickly as well—arranging repairs, billing for damages, and updating availability—all before the equipment even returns to the warehouse! This level of efficiency not only saves time, but also potentially increases revenue by keeping your inventory accurate and clients accountable.

Let staff report any information when and where it happens. That’s fewer gray hairs on your head and extra cash in your pocket 🙌.

Advantage of cloud based warehouse management


What are the disadvantages of Cloud-based Warehouse Management Systems?

While Cloud Warehouse Management Systems offer numerous benefits, they also come with their own set of drawbacks. Understanding these limitations is crucial for you to make an informed decision. 


1. Concern: Dependence on Internet Connectivity

While it's true that a cloud-based Warehouse Management System like Rentman requires Internet connectivity, the reality of modern business operations means that most essential services (email, online banking, etc.) rely on internet access. A stable internet connection has become a basic necessity for your business.


2. Concern: Ongoing Costs

Most Cloud Warehouse Management Systems operate on a subscription model. This might feel like an ongoing cost, but this approach allows for constant improvements and updates without additional charges for new features.


3. Concern: Data Security and Privacy

To ensure high availability and data safety, Rentman hosts its servers in two separate, secure data centers. The Cloud Warehouse Management data is backed up overnight, and services like Amazon Web Services, known for their security and reliability, are used. Personal databases and secured connections protect individual user information, with certified security measures in place to guard against theft or loss.


4. Concern: What if the Provider Goes Out of Business?

Rentman has an escrow agreement in place, ensuring that even in the unlikely event of the company ceasing operations, the service can continue under the management of a third party. This provides users with peace of mind regarding the long-term viability and accessibility of their data.

By understanding these solutions and approaches, you can imagine that the right provider actively addresses many of the perceived drawbacks of Cloud Warehouse Management.


Find the right fit

Every rental business operates in its own unique way - especially in the warehouse. Finding the best way to reduce human errors and manage unexpected events may take slightly different forms, but some things are true across the board. 

Keeping track of the work (while still empowering those who need to execute the job), boosting collaboration and simplifying workflows are game-changers for any business.

There are many inventory management solutions on the market, some of which are specifically made for the event industry. With functionalities such as QR and barcode scanning from a mobile App, planning extra equipment and alternatives, reporting repairs and lost equipment, Rentman works relentlessly to be the best one-stop solution in the industry.

Try it out for yourself and see what a stress-free night of sleep feels like!


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