Faced with an outdated warehouse management system, Arrow Electronics needed to get operators and supervisors out from behind their desks for faster, more efficient decision-making
- Increased process efficiencies with the modernization of the user experience
- Immediate decision-making from a newly mobile workforce
- Streamlined operations and quick, customer-order fill, thanks to real-time data
- Instant communication across the company’s global facilities through a custom-built chat tool
- A strong foundation for Arrow’s next phase of mobility that includes employee wearables
Axway Appcelerator has assisted us in building and deploying our WMS Mobile Solution rapidly and has proven to have extraordinary benefits for Arrow and our customers. Add Shockoe’s strategic understanding of our business and their expertise and we now have a WMS Mobile Solution that helps us to remain highly competitive and retain our industry leadership.” Director Mobility, Arrow Electronics
Transforming to a modern, digital business
To immediately boost productivity and efficiency while also taking into consideration technology trends the company would likely face five years from now, electronics component provider Arrow Electronics knew it needed to modernize its global distribution channel. With a Warehouse Management System (WMS) built in the 1990s, employees relied on cumbersome RFID scanners to identify, categorize, ship, and track inventory. The scanners weighed 7 lbs. each and limited supervisors to their desks when managing work orders and processes.
Within the system upgrade, company officials wanted a robust, digital solution that would allow operators to be more nimble and effective while conducting selecting, storing, and shipping functions. The solution would also need to assist warehouse supervisors quickly access information and create custom reports from anywhere, including shift schedules, orders, and inquiries. They turned to Axway and specialty mobile solutions provider, Shockoe.
Trusted partners with razor focus
To deliver a modern, mobile solution for Arrow, Axway and long-time partner Shockoe Enterprise Mobile Solutions worked together to upgrade all areas of the WMS. With razor focus on user experience, the two partners custom-built a mobile solution using Axway Appcelerator.
Thanks to the Appcelerator mobile app development platform and Shockoe’s deep expertise of Arrow’s supply chain business, intuitive, native apps were built and quickly scaled with mobile-optimized APIs. New handheld scanners were also implemented in place of the outdated RFID scanners.
Smart decisions from real-time data
With the new mobile connectivity, Arrow operators are no longer tethered to their offices and are more efficient with new scanners that allow data collection “on the go.” Warehouse supervisors can now access real-time data and make immediate, impactful decisions that streamline operations and rapidly satisfy customer orders with accuracy.
Arrow Connect, a custom-built chat function, enables easy communication among worldwide distribution facilities for instant response, much to the delight of customers everywhere.
Up next: wearables at work
Rollout of the new mobile WMS was initially done across three primary Arrow locations. Once company leadership saw the significantly improved efficiencies and reduced costs, plans were immediately set in motion for worldwide deployment. Shockoe continues to work with Arrow on additional facility rollouts as well as defining new product picking and storing processes that will further improve business flow and efficiency.
Farther down the line, Arrow is also well positioned to implement new technology, including wearables for operators. Thanks to a strong foundation that encourages quick, native, cross-platform app development that seamlessly connects to any data source, the sky is the limit for the company’s next phase of mobile inventory management.