Warehouse in a warehouse for omnichannel fulfillment

by Inside Logistics Online Staff

Tecsys Inc.’s warehouse-in-a-warehouse e-commerce fulfillment solution enables retailers and brands to execute e-commerce fulfillment while leaving existing wholesale and distribution models and legacy systems largely intact.

The warehouse-in-a-warehouse model is gaining traction as brands and retailers seek to meet the quickly evolving demands of customers and improve online order fulfillment processes by continuing to use existing fulfillment centres and infrastructure.

One facility runs multiple distribution operations that are decoupled from each other. For example, a brand owner fulfills wholesale orders and e-commerce orders from the same location, each operation running on its own respective WMS.

This strategy allows for more effective use of space and resources as it divides storage areas dedicated to e-commerce fulfillment orders destined for parcel type orders from areas designed to store pallets for case picking. The area, reserved for the e-commerce fulfillment function, is then optimized for more efficient picking, packing and shipping of online orders, allowing for faster turnaround times for e-commerce order management. This approach also provides future flexibility where automation can be easily introduced into the picking and packing workflows.

Tecsys recently implemented the warehouse-in-a-warehouse model for a global luxury cosmetics and beauty brand retailer seeking to drive e-commerce order fulfillment efficiency by leveraging the space in their existing fulfillment centre as part of their omnichannel fulfillment strategy. The move to Tecsys Omni WMS with available cluster picking introduced the company to digital system-automated workflows that would reduce its current ERP-driven processes by more than 90 percent.

“Realizing that the existing WMS was working for its legacy wholesale business but struggling to provide the agility and flexibility to pick and pack online orders coming from their omnichannel business, they needed something optimized for e-commerce fulfillment,” explains Frank Seiferth, senior director, Retail Product Management at Tecsys.

“Within its new warehouse-in-a-warehouse, the cosmetics company can toggle between cluster picking and batch picking, depending on the order profile.”