Achieving highest performance thanks to comprehensive project management

In times of e-commerce, digitalization and automation, continuously increasing requirements towards performance and efficiency in warehouses are on the daily agenda. In order to achieve top performance rates despite increased requirements, SSI SCHAEFER applies their in-house warehouse management system WAMAS® for the administration of automated warehouses. The powerful logistics software is the core of each turn-key system. Customers from around the world already benefit from this software solution.

To ensure the maximum benefit for the customer, a detailed analysis of the individual needs is the first step in every project. These needs are then linked with possible applications of an automated system. Project managers are responsible for the successful implementation of the defined project. They carry out the entire project management – starting from the customer’s order to the final handover of the implemented and individually adapted warehouse control.

Highest performance rates thanks to extensive project know-how

Whether it is a routine extension of an existing system or a completely new automated system, the SSI SCHAEFER logistics software WAMAS carries out the highly efficient control of the warehouse. From the very beginning of the cooperation, the software implementation team is in close contact with the customer’s project team. Thanks to their logistical expertise and extensive experience, SSI SCHAEFER employees fully understand logistics processes. They pay attention to every detail but, at the same time, always keep an eye on the bigger picture. This is the only way to elaborate optimum and durable solutions for the automated system that also fulfill future requirements of the customer and the market. The main challenge is to perfectly integrate the modular solutions of WAMAS into all customer processes and to optimize them in the course of the automation and conversion to WAMAS.

The functional specifications form the decisive basis for the implementation. The development team divides the tasks into several development packages to better distribute project-specific information. The in-house quality management department of SSI SCHAEFER continuously carries out tests, documents the results and finally issues the internal approval of the software. At the same time, the IT project manager ensures that internal and external stakeholders keep the common goal in mind and that agreed implementation paths are adhered to. The Software Solutions department at SSI SCHAEFER is the prime point of contact for the customer when it comes to decision-making and possibly necessary adaptations.

With the start of software commissioning, the team begins to implement the elaborated processes into the actual system and carries out tests. A smooth project schedule requires close cooperation of all sub-systems – from rack construction to electrics and programmable logic controller (PLC) to software solutions. Intensive process and mass tests ensure that all initial challenges can be mastered, in terms of software, as well as mechanically and electrically. Only then is the system capable of achieving the required and desired performance rates. SSI SCHAEFER includes the customer in commissioning and provides training in the actual system. In doing so, the customer can test the system and assess whether the system fulfills all of their requirements. The testing phase is followed by the joint acceptance of the system commissioning. The live operation, which is assisted by the software team of SSI SCHAEFER, starts with the ramp-up of the system. This ramp-up phase can vary depending on the customer requirements. The step-by-step handover of the project to the Customer Service and Support Team of SSI SCHAEFER marks the successful completion of the project. During this phase, the entire collected project information is given to the respective employees. The Service Account Manager serves as central contact person and is available 24/7 in case of service questions. This guarantees the customer highest availability of all systems.

Project management with a vision

The Software Solutions project managers guide the project from contract signing along to the handover to after-sales services. They also assure customers that SSI SCHAEFER complies with international standards for project management during the entire project period. They not only lead the whole team but are also responsible for internal coordination with other SSI SCHAEFER departments. Continuous risk and change management as well as constant controlling ensure the timely, qualitative and financial success of the project.

SSI SCHAEFER always keeps pace with the latest trends. This applies to precise documentation of all projects as well as to ongoing development of employees. With a focus on the future, our main goal is to discover and evaluate new trends and state-of-the-art technologies and to integrate them into our processes. The valuable knowledge and targeted measures in combination with a necessary foresight enable overall and innovative solutions for complex logistics processes.

About the author: Martin Spitzer, Project Manager IT at SSI SCHAEFER

Besides a professional career as a swimmer, Martin Spitzer has acquired management expertise at the University of Graz and during postgraduate management studies in the US. He joined the SSI SCHAEFER Group in 2017 and since then has worked as project manager in the software implementation team. In this position he is responsible for the smooth implementation of intralogistics systems.

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Martin Spitzer - Project Manager IT, SSI SCHAEFER

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