A standalone Yard Management System (YMS) will provide many benefits to an organization, such as visibility of trailers in the yard and relief from manual pen and paper record keeping. It can help a facility reduce detention and demurrage costs and help to make their yard operations more efficient. What really makes the YMS shine, though, is integrating it with the Warehouse Management System (WMS) and Transportation Management System (TMS) solutions already in place.
Many times a company will concentrate its Enterprise Resource Planning (ERP) system exclusively on WMS and TMS because those are the most obvious areas. It is virtually impossible to run a warehouse of any size without a WMS, and of course the warehouse is a priority. Likewise, the TMS is invaluable for managing routes, lanes and the economy of the organization’s transportation. What is often overlooked is how the YMS can connect these two and amplify their effectiveness, along with contributing its own value for the enterprise.
There are some WMS and TMS solutions that offer some YMS functions, but none come close to providing the benefit of a true, fully dedicated YMS. An advanced YMS offers many functions to optimize efficiency of yard all yard operations – from the gate, through the yard, and up to the dock. This is often a blind spot for many organizations who are still getting by on pen and paper for security, yard spotters and dock managers.
Optimizing the yard operations with a first class YMS leads to improved throughput, which helps the WMS to accomplish its goals for loading/unloading and staff utilization. In addition, the simple visibility of a load physically arriving at a facility (with real time notifications) is a game changer for allocation planning. Consequently, inbound and outbound loads and deliveries handled by the TMS also benefit from the additional visibility. There is a real synergy between all three systems, and they all work better when integrated together.