Oracle JD Edwards Warehouse Management System, Explained
Warehouse Management System (WMS) is one of the Oracle JD Edwards EnterpriseOne (JDE E1) key application modules that can significantly improve your operations and supply chain. Unfortunately, many JDE customers remain unaware of its capabilities and benefits. In this blog post, I’ll describe some of the key features and capabilities of this lesser known module.
The JD Edwards EnterpriseOne Warehouse module is designed to make your warehouse operations more efficient, improve visibility and tracking of inventory, and optimize warehouse space usage. It is an integral part of the Manufacturing and Distribution processes and works in conjunction with many of the JDE E1 product families – including Inventory and Shop Floor Management – to manage inventory and company products.
In this example, an E1 page demonstrates the process flow of supporting a Procure to Pay and an Order to Cash solution integrated with WMS capabilities:
Courtesy of Oracle
The Warehouse Management System Process
A warehouse management system generally is broken down in the following processes:
The general flow process could be shown as follows:
- Inbound: This is the handling of goods coming into a facility. Most commonly, these goods are associated with purchases so the receiving process is performed against a Purchase Order. However, there are a variety of other sources of receipts. These include Customer Returns, where the receipt is against a RMA from the Order System; Transfers associated with Inter-Warehouse movements within the corporation; and possibly receipts of material on a Manufacturing Work Order that had been sent to an external organization for outside processing. Following receipt from these various sources, the material may be inspected and then put away into the most appropriate storage locations.
- Internal Processing: This consists of all the processes associated with the internal handling of the inventory. These include Accuracy, either through Physical Inventory Counts or Cycle Counts; intra-warehouse movements and Replenishment activity; Picking – for Customer Orders, internal Manufacturing, Transfers, etc. and possibly Packing activities. It may also include assembly into kits or even light manufacturing within the warehouse. Warehouses aren’t just for storage anymore and these additional values and deferment activities are a vital part of any warehousing workload.
- Outbound: This is the reverse of the receiving process and has a similar set of possible transaction sources. Most commonly, outbound shipments are associated with Customer Orders. However, the other possible sources are the mirror image of the Receiving sources: Vendor Returns associated with Purchase Orders, Transfers associated with Inter-Warehouse movements within the corporation and Work Order shipments to outside processors.
It is clear from this overview that any Warehousing System needs to support a wide variety of processes coming from a similarly wide variety of transaction sources.
Benefits of a Warehouse Management System
The JDE E1 WMS provides flexible, automated support for better customer service and lower operating costs. Advanced, rules-based stock location and directed movement logic help dramatically improve both the warehouse labor efficiency and space usage. Full integration with sales, purchasing, manufacturing and transportation enables you to meet your customers’ preferences for how they want their orders sourced, made, packaged and shipped.
Some of the benefits that can be identified when WMS is implemented are:
- Streamline material flow
- User defined movement process
- Optimize space utilization
- Automatic replenishment
- LPN and Lot/Serial creation and tracking
- Full integration (Purchasing, Inventory, Manufacturing, Sales, Transportation)
- Reduce cost and complexity
- Reduce risk and upgrade issues
- Eliminate problems with reconciliation
- Simplify support
Courtesy of Oracle
Warehouse Management System Features
The JDE E1 WMS has many features that address specific warehouse issues. These features are still under development, but Oracle is committed to improving the functionality.
Some of the WMS most important features include:
- License Plating: The license plate is a unique identifier that associates each product carton or item with a unique license plate number (LPN). The system stores the itemized part numbers, quantity, inventory status, location, lot number and creation date in the LPN record. Simply scanning a carton label with the LPN in text and barcode form enables you to identify goods in transactions, like receiving or shipping. Using license plates substantially reduces the number of scans necessary to enter a transaction since only one barcode must be scanned to identify all of the product information.
RFID Integration: Presently, if we explore JDE business functions (BSFNs) then we can find several ones with system code “D3N.” This is the dedicated system code that JDE has allocated for data collection using the dcLINK interface (from DSI). There are around 74 similar business functions available in JDE which are used in conjunction with the DSA software interface for integration with handhelds in warehouse process automation. Examples include Inventory Adjustments (ND3N4114), Purchase Order Receipts (ND3N4312) and Receipt Routing (ND3N4309).
Under system code “D3N,” there are several UDCs that need to be configured to activate versions of JDE programs used in integration with the dcLINK interface. All the required versions must be listed under these UDCs.
Going one step further, users can now interact with dcLINK via the VOICEActivator by using a standard, voice-enabled headset and microphone, which leaves their hands and eyes free to perform tasks. Embedded voice functionality gives dcLINK clients greater flexibility to use the most appropriate data collection method – bar code, RFID, and voice – for their business needs without installing additional applications.
Ownership of all the Business Functions starting with ND3N* and UDCs D3N/** belong to Oracle’s business partner DSI rather than directly to Oracle. Oracle includes these with the standard software so that DSI customers can download ESU fixes for these objects using our common ESU software update process. Oracle validated the dcLINK integration with EnterpriseOne as part of the Oracle Application Integration Initiative, which ensures standards-based integration between Oracle enterprise applications and partner solutions.
Carton Recommendations: You can use the Standard Pack Carton Recommendations application to generate carton details when you set the Version of Carton Reorganization processing option. A carton recommendation summarizes the number and weight of pallets or cartons and makes recommendations. If an item is packed in two different types of cartons, there are two separate lines for the item on the Work with Carton Recommendations form. This form summarizes on the shipment number, item, and the innermost and outermost carton on each detail row. The row for the outer most carton has a blank outer carton. For example, a carton recommendation would list shipment number, type of cartons, and the Customer carton ID on the Carton Hierarchy form.
You can manually change the recommendations when an expendable or alternate packaging is used via Standard Pack Carton Recommendations application if the carton detail has not been created for the shipment. No automatic changes can occur to carton recommendations after you have manually changed a carton recommendation.
Packaging is based on the rules for standard pack. Recommendations are across all sales orders on a shipment which means a carton can hold the same item number from multiple sales orders and a pallet can hold cartons from multiple sales orders.
- Zone Management: A fixed location is designated for the same purpose – like put-away, picking, and replenishment – for a given item. A zone is a group of locations that you use for a particular purpose. For example, a flow rack near the shipping dock always holds the same item for picking, and a bulk location near the receiving dock always holds pallets of the same item. You use a fixed zone as one large location from which to replenish fixed picking locations.
- Fixed Put-away and Picking Locations. You can set up fixed put-away and picking locations to use the same locations consistently for storing or picking a given item. This consistency enables you to segregate locations for certain items or to position locations near each other for a smoother transition. Often, the fixed put-away locations are the same as the fixed picking locations.
Courtesy of Oracle
As you can see, WMS is a totally integrated and powerful solution. A WMS implementation can cover a large range of data and setup, so the success of the implementation is based on a deep analysis and detailed definition of the locations, item profiles and program setup. Smartbridge has deep expertise and experience implementing WMS for variety of companies, we recommend staring with a demo, and proof of concept to verify the solution work for your companies’ specific needs. Contact us today for a free demo and discovery workshop.
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