What is Inventory Management?
What is Inventory Management?
Inventory management is essentially keeping a log of your business’ assets so you can take stock of and see how these assets are behaving. This sounds simple but numerous logistical challenges can arise if it is not done correctly.
The goal of inventory management is to have the right products in the right place at the right time. Good inventory management is critical to any business’ wellbeing since it provides the foundations for smooth and timely operations. By ensuring your records are accurate and your stock is replenished, inventory management enables your business to deliver what it needs to. Discover the difference it can make to your business.
How Does Inventory Management Work?
Inventory management works by creating digital, online profiles of your assets. The process identifies and responds to changing stock levels to fulfil current needs and prevent shortages. With asset management software you can create a digital profile for each asset, in this profile you can add information such as purchase price and date. Then, you’ll add QR code asset tags to the physical assets themselves. By doing this you will be linking the digital profiles with their physical counterparts. All you have to do is scan the tag to complete the link.
You can use IT asset management software to automate how you track and manage your IT assets, too. Another benefit of IT asset management software is that you can use it as fixed asset tracking software simultaneously, ensuring you get the most accurate overview of what your business owns.
The Risks of Poor Inventory Management
Poor inventory management can result in increased but avoidable costs, loss of assets, and inefficient processes. Inventory management underpins the core of any business.
Managing your inventory with spreadsheets is outdated and this manual process is notoriously prone to human error. Plus, spreadsheets fail to keep up with changing trends and demands. If you can’t track trends then you won’t know when and how your customers’ habits are changing.
The Benefits of Inventory Management
Inventory management can provide your business with numerous benefits, from operational efficiency to asset longevity.
1. Fewer lost assets
If you have an up-to-date and accurate inventory then, needless to say, there will be fewer lost assets. Inventory management lies in understanding what stock you have, where it is and how it is moving. Identifying the location of assets across the supply chain can prevent loss, damage and theft.
By logging and managing the locations of your assets you can minimise asset downtime and schedule asset maintenance and your business can continue to run smoothly. You can pull all this information together into customisable and exportable reports, where you’ll be able to view your entire asset register. This helps you make better business-focused decisions.
2. Lower costs
When inventory management is done correctly it can save you money. Understanding stock trends means you see how much of and where you have something in stock so you’re better able to use the stock you have. This is especially powerful for multi-site enterprises since it will allow you to keep less stock at each location, whether that be a store, warehouse, wherever it may be as you’ll be able to pull stock from anywhere based on your requirements. Managing your inventory effectively decreases costs tied up in inventory and decreases the amount of stock that goes unsold before it’s obsolete.
3. Time efficiency
Good inventory management can completely optimise the workflow of both you and your team. Warehouses can be difficult to navigate and if assets are hard to locate then your staff will waste time trying to find them. With an accurate record of your assets you can pinpoint and retrieve information at the click of the button. Even better, with tagged assets you can retrieve an asset’s profile simply by scanning the tag. And every time a tag is scanned, the asset’s last location is updated, ensuring your inventory remains accurate. This can inform purchasing, maintenance, and ensures you maintain the right stock levels, meaning you can use your time to make the big decisions.
4. Greater clarity
Without accurate stock details, it is impossible to know when to refill stock or which stock moves well. Inventory management provides you with full visibility on what inventory you have and where it’s located. With asset management software and asset tagging you can assign assets to colleagues, helping to ensure accountability.
Larger operations typically have inventory spread across many places throughout the supply chain. Businesses need an accurate view of inventory to guarantee fulfilment of customer orders, reduce shipment turnaround times, and minimise stockouts, oversells and markdowns. Itemit’s inventory management provides your business with the clarity to achieve this at scale.
5. More control over your assets
Inventory management gives you the right stock, at the right time, at the right levels, in the right place, and at the right cost. The visibility you gain through this naturally provides you with greater control over your assets. With asset management software, the process of inventory management goes beyond simply monitoring and replenishing stock. Transitioning your business away from manual databases and formulas to a smart inventory management system allows you to do everything from asset tracking and demand forecasting to reporting and accounting.
itemit’s Inventory Management
Effective inventory management underpins the success of any business. Itemit’s inventory management software is shareable, transparent and easy to use. Transform your inventory management with itemit, our powerful reporting, filtering, and exporting capabilities will make your daily tasks a breeze.
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What are the best ways to track your assets for your business? Find out more about asset tracking and how you can use it here.
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