Fast track for process optimization and WMS selection and tendering

Case Study: Sativa Industry

Recreational cannabis use was in the process of being legalized in the region, and this grower and producer of medical cannabis products was rapidly preparing for the significant increase in expected demand in order to achieve a competitive advantage. Due to the differing nature of recreational products, they were also expanding their scope and production capabilities to include edible products. Miebach had already been supporting the client to overcome bottlenecks within the production facility, however additional automation and IT support had been identified as an improvement opportunity. For this aspect, Miebach provided a due-diligence study of automation and WMS solutions, as the client had been managing their warehouse with an ERP.

Cross-industry complexity

Due to the highly-regulated nature of the products, the client faced concerns across multiple industries. Because they had growing facilities, the demands of having an agricultural product that required time to grow and process raw materials into useful components was a bottleneck to address. As a producer of medical-grade therapeutic products, strict tracking and traceability required pharmaceutical industry compliance. Legal regulations required 100 percent inventory accuracy with only a 24-hour window to resolve deviations before having to report the discrepancy to the governing agencies. The introduction of recreational products opened up a new business line of consumer goods that would include food-grade production lines and packaging requirements, including product stamping for tax purposes.

While material handling and automated solutions would be installed in a later phase to significantly increase production capacity, a WMS capable of managing this level of complexity and interfacing with the MHE across multiple facilities would be required.

RFP and Supplier Selection

Through a series of workshops, stakeholder interviews, and onsite production observation, Miebach worked closely with the client to optimize processes and material flows and develop detailed descriptions in order to build specification documents for the WMS tendering and selection. Miebach then organized, managed, and facilitated the RFP process including two rounds of vendor submissions, interviews, and product demonstrations, after which the client stakeholders came to a unanimous agreement for the WMS solution.

The requirements for the selected WMS included light transportation management capabilities, 99% inventory accuracy on cycle counts, tracking and recording of multiple quality control statuses per item, multi-level license plates, management of 2 batch/lot numbers, and robust reporting and dashboard capabilities to track KPIs and productivity. Additional functionalities that were not critical, but “nice to have” were labor management capabilities, dynamic slotting, and cartonization.

From concept to benefits in 15 months