WMS giving us huge freedom
for modeling logical processes.
Upon the arrival of new WMS functionality in Microsoft Dynamics AX, a completely new possibilities of warehouse management have emerged. The new WMS tool is very flexible, giving us huge freedom when modeling logical processes.
But high flexibility requires certain discipline and obeying certain rules, or else it can become a burden and project itself negatively in the form of slow warehouse processes.
To get the most of your WMS, I have 3 tips for improving the WMS performance in Microsoft Dynamics AX.
Tip 1: Detailed overview only when necessary
WMS functionality “Work” is usually composed of two task “Pick” and “Put”As you might already know, the basic entity in the new WMS is „Work“. This entity is usually composed of two tasks, which are ’pick something’ (Pick) and ’put it somewhere else’ (PUT). Generating of these roles is directly controlled by „Location Directives“ and „Work templates“ rules.
One important assistant for diagnostics of the correct logical processes settings is detailed logging of the way how the system browses(evaluates) created rules for creating Work.
This Log is called „Work creation history protocol“. In this log, the information about how individual Works were created is recorded step by step. This log is therefore very important in the period of creating, setting and tweaking the warehouse processes in the system.
In full operation we recommend to turn off the creation of this log.
Turning this feature off (on) is performed very easily in “Warehouse management parameters“ menu.
Creation of the log has a big influence on the speed of „Work“ creation. From our own experience we know that turning this log off can speed up „Work“ creation by as much as 20%. This can mean dozens of spare minutes if generating thousands of „Works“ at the same moment all the time(each morning).
Take a moment to think about whether you really need this log or whether you can turn it off.
Tip 2. Spare the rules
You may have already learned that the new WMS functionality in Microsoft Dynamics AX works based on preset „Location Directives“ and „Work templates“ rules. Combining these rules can determine how precisely will particular warehouse process look.
While rules entered in „Location Directives“ give us directions, thus the place, from which we will pick the goods or where we will put it upon stocking, rules entered in „ Work templates“ determine how particular process will look (whether it would be one or two steps).
The image shows a screenshot from the system with „Location Directives“ rules.
Notice the highlighted part of individual rules’ serial number. These numbers are important for evaluation logic. The system uses these numbers as priorities and starts evaluating the rules from the lowest number.
The evaluating of which rule is the correct one is performed in a way that the system tries applying rules one after another until it reaches the “correct“ one.
Evaluation is performed in the same way in “Work templates“ rules.
In reality it can easily happen that we have hundreds of created rules both in „Location Directives“ and „Work templates“ and therefore our required rule is located among rules with very high serial number.
When you realize that the system goes through all rules starting with the one with the lowest number, a lot of time elapses until it reaches the correct the rule suitable for created process.
Thus it is suitable to keep the amount of “Location Directives“ and “Work templates“ rules as small as possible. It is necessary to realize this fact not only upon the initial app settings (Implementation), but also upon the following warehouse processes edits.
It is good to realize the fact that the system goes through all rules while creating the warehouse map in the system, because there are many ways how to design the warehouse more effectively in terms of system operation and therefore rapidly decrease the total amount of “Location Directives“ and “Work templates“ rules.
Tip 3. Be up to date
You are not alone. It is necessary to realize, that WMS in Microsoft Dynamics AX is used by many customers.
All these customers will probably deal with the same or similar issues. These will be problems concerning performance of the whole solution.
I think it is good to remind that a software giant, Microsoft, lies behind the application. Luckily people from Microsoft listen to their customers and regularly bring patches and updates focused on the most common issues. Microsoft also regularly brings updates and repairs concerning performance of the app.
Most important is make sure that your app contains all latest official repairs.
It is therefore necessary to make sure that your app contains all latest official repairs. Be sure that when you keep your app updated and install all repair kits concerning performance, you will prevent many issues that you could encounter while working with the system on a daily basis.
The list of current repairs concerning performance can be found for example on this site.
Jiří Hosenseidl works as a Dynamics AX Consultant in the company Blue Dynamic.