In fact, Kozenski says, a lot of the modifications can be written right into the new software. "The customer has to ask if he still needs the modification and if it can be replaced by something in the new system."
For Provia, many of those modifications can be added to the new systems fairly easily. "In 99 percent of the cases, we worked with them to do the customizations, and it's simply a matter of plugging the extension points into the new systems," Lewis says.
"The distribution industry presents some of the most complex scenarios imaginable due to the wide range of needs and requirements that each individual dealer has," adds Paul Crist, vice president of global sales at Provia. "The flexibility built into ViaWare WMS allows the software to mold to a company's specific needs."
And, many companies that have upgraded their systems have discovered other unexpected benefits as well. For Homedics, a Commerce Township, MI-based manufacturer and distributor of health and wellness products, upgrading its Manhattan Associates WMS package opened other areas of improvement within the warehouse.
"We've taken the opportunity during the upgrade to not only re-evaluate our current functionality but also our business processes and realign them with best practices," says Ed Komeshak, senior systems analyst. "During our last two upgrades, we've achieved a net increase in system functionality for an overall improved efficiency in our supply chain operations."