The year 2020 changed the face of e-commerce. We fell into the pandemic face-first, and consumers who could no longer flock store aisles made a swift move to online shopping. That year alone saw over two billion goods or services sold online, and e-retail sales surpassing $4.2 trillion worldwide.
COVID-19 continues to have an impact on e-commerce and online behavior, which continues to carry itself well into 2022. Whether this shift is permanent cannot be predicted yet, but it is certain that e-commerce will continue to flourish as long as it meets consumer demands.
And what can be said about consumers in the digital economy? They are empowered by connected technology, their expectations around services are growing day-by-day, and they want the best prices in the market without compromising on quality.
With online orders flowing in, we need systems, processes, and technologies that can help businesses ease the pressure on their supply chains. Order management software (OMS) helps bridge the gap between supply chain management, and customer experience to ensure successful delivery experiences.
What is an Order Management System?
Before getting into OMS, it is worth looking at what order management is. E-commerce order management is the end-to-end process of online order fulfillment. In the last few years, order management has depended on cumbersome enterprise resource planning (ERPs) and spreadsheets that slow down the movement of goods. These systems are outdated and unfit to support the fast-paced market of today. Hence the need for an order management system. OMS is often a standalone software application integrated with ERP systems that deliver consistent customer service by automating every step of the product journey. It allows managers to keep track of orders coming from multiple sales channels and fulfillment points.
What does an OMS do?
OMS bridges the gaps between order entry, processing, accounting, tracking warehouse operations, and business intelligence. It makes use of real-time data to oversee sales, inventory, and fulfillment processes. How complex the OMS system is depends on the requirements of the business. Here are some features of OMS to consider while looking for a solution for your business.
- It tracks all orders: The function of an OMS is to make life easier for not the business alone, but also its customers as well. Its most important function is tracking and monitoring of orders. OMS is especially beneficial for companies that sell via several channels as it centralizes sales, saves time, and increases productivity.
- It manages inventory: Inventory management is a vital part of running any business. Overselling, overstocking, and inaccurate forecasting are only some of the many issues that crop up if companies don’t accurately measure their inventory. An OMS helps in inventory tracking in real-time and across multiple channels.
- Fulfills the order: With the help of the right order management system, businesses can ensure that order fulfillment is faster, more accurate, and more intuitive.
- Makes reverse logistics simpler: It is no news that reverse logistics has become just as important as order fulfillment. About 30 percent of all orders are returned on purchase. OMS makes returns, replacements, and reorders more straightforward as it keeps track of on-hand inventory and can provide customers with a range of options to choose from.
Check Out: Reverse / Returns Logistics
Locus’ Last-Mile Order Management Software
The movement of goods from the warehouse to the final delivery destination constitutes the last mile. It is also the most elusive part of the supply chain and is challenging to get right. An OMS for the last mile can help keep costs in check and provide a range of operations like delivery scheduling, task allocation, routing, and real-time tracking. Here are some of the ways Locus’ AI-powered OMS solution can help optimize the last mile:
- Efficient planning and execution: With the help of AI-driven logistics planning, brands can manage their delivery operations with ease. DispatchIQ helps with timely order scheduling, resource allocation, and route optimization making last-mile planning fast and efficient.
- Finding convenient time slots: Locus’ time-slot management system allows logistics managers to plan last-mile operations more systematically. It also allows customers to pick the most convenient time slots for their deliveries or home service requests.
- Real-time tracking of orders: Locus’ live visibility tool helps in tracking orders in real-time and providing live status updates to customers, improving supply chain visibility and keeping customers satisfied.
- Personalizing customer experience: With Locus’ advanced data analytics and insights, businesses can offer customers better, more personalized delivery services. It also allows decision-makers to stay on top of market trends, customer preferences and on-ground happenings.
Order management processes are long and tedious, but businesses have many OMS options to choose from—everything from manual order management systems to more comprehensive solutions. Adopting the right OMS system for your business improves the scope of automation, reduces errors, and enhances the end customer experience.