Nov 9th, 2023

WMS/WES/WCS – Warehousing Software Explained

The phrase “one is none, two is one” began in the US military, and has since found a wide array of use in many different sectors. Its meaning is to teach the value of redundancy whenever designing, operating, or maintaining any kind of complex operation, system, or machinery. 

Yet if you were to look into the world of digital intralogistics and warehousing software, it would seem that things have moved one step beyond. With WMS, WES, and WCS, it seems that in the world of warehousing software, both one and two are none, and in fact three is one. 

Warehouse management software. Warehouse control software. Warehouse execution software. All these seem and sound vitally important to managing a modern warehouse, which is why Invar Warehousing Software offers the functionality of all these, and more besides.

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To understand what all these are, it is best to clearly understand the tasks each one is best at performing. 

What does a WMS package do? 

Warehouse Management Software (WMS) focuses on the common and normal day-to-day operations of a warehouse. WMSs organise things like picking lists, packing direction, generating documentation, co-ordinating put-away, and other such overarching tasks. As the name suggests, the tasks that, when directed as an overall process, result in the effective management of the warehouse. The rules and general direction of said management is decided by senior staff, and the actualisation of the management is performed by the WMS. 

What does a WES package do?  

Warehouse Execution Software (WES) is more specifically involved with the interconnecting of the various parts of a warehouse’s functions, both within itself and with areas outside the warehouse. A WES integrates things like RFID scanners into the wider network of warehousing software that make the process possible. WES also deals with things like shipping documentation, and making sure it is formatted and handled correctly to deal with APIs of shipping and courier firms and the like. In short, WES is in the business of executing the tasks set in place by either senior staff, or a WMS. 

What does a WCS package do? 

Warehouse Control Software (WCS) is even more narrowly concerned with the control, co-ordination, and completeness of your warehouse automation processes. As the name might suggest, WCS controls things like pick-to-light systems, sortation devices, voice integration, PLCs, conveyor systems, AMRs, and other such devices. 

Does my warehouse need all three? 

Yes and no. 

Yes in the sense that you need a piece of software that can perform all the functions and processes of everything herein mentioned. 

No in the sense that you don’t need three separate pieces of software/software packages to accomplish this. You would be better off just using one. A single software solution suite for all three means fewer integration issues, better interconnectivity overall, and a much higher likelihood that any problems that might arise will have a clear solution, and a specifically dedicated team to help you out. 

This is all what you can expect with IWS. See our full brochure below to discover more. 


Written by

Invar Admin