Keeping inventory is an involved process that takes complete accuracy and organization.
It can be difficult to keep track of inventory all by yourself, so being equipped with the proper tools can transform how efficiently your business runs. Consider these useful tips for an inventory management strategy that minimizes errors:
Inventory management software
topShelf is an inventory management software that even works smoothly with other workspace management, accounting, e-commerce, and CRM applications. topShelf tracks it all from being packaged and sent, to delivered and right out of the box.
With this system, you can ensure that product quantities shipped match with product quantities received. This is important because as a business owner, you should prioritize accurate fulfillment of orders. If you’re doing so without the aid of a software like topShelf, you may be more prone to making errors.
Their seamless integration capabilities allow you to keep track of shipping information so both you and your customers know where a package is at all times. You can also print barcodes for products and product bins, create asset summaries, and update stock continuously.
topShelf is especially useful for companies who sell and distribute a large number of products.
These companies must work extra hard to avoid misleading customers and making mistakes while taking inventory. Being backed by software like topShelf can transform the way you do business.
Be as detailed as possible
Having a strong data-analysis strategy is fundamental to managing your inventory correctly. By ensuring that every product has a unique set of data that is easy to keep track of, you can segment your inventory in a way that minimizes mistakes.
Ideally, you’ll have a POS (point-of-sale) system to help you organize this data, but if not, make sure every product is backed by this data:
- Product Name
- UPC (Universal Product Code): standardized product descriptions
- SKU (Stock Keeping Unit): number associated with a product that is specific to a certain company
- Cost per product
If you sell variations of the same product, make sure there’s also variation between the data sets for those products. If most of your products are offered in different sizes or colors, this is especially important because you should be tracking the quantities and sales data for each sub-product as well.
Count inventory regularly
If you’re using an inventory management system, your inventory is already being counted regularly. Nonetheless, it is still important to count inventory yourself every so often. How often you decide to do this depends on the size and needs of your business.
You may be thinking it’s a waste of time since you invested all this money in a dedicated inventory management software, but having a back-up system to support your primary system makes your process more foolproof. Also, an inventory management software may not detect employee theft, so that’s another reason to do counts yourself.
If you’re dealing with a large inventory, counting it can be a daunting and time-consuming task. Combat this by counting in cycles. Every month or so, count a specific category of product so you’re not tackling it all at once. If you do it all at once, you may burn out halfway through and neglect to notice an important error.
There are plenty more effective ways to manage your inventory effectively, but these are some great tips to help you get started. Whether you are using a software or doing it manually, counting inventory doesn’t have to be stressful. Above all else, make sure you have a well-thought out inventory management strategy and an eye for the smaller details.