Whether you’re looking to improve operations or want to stay organized with your inventory, we’ve got everything you need to know and more in this guide on inventory management.
What is inventory management?
So, what exactly is inventory management? It’s essentially the practice of sourcing, storing, using, and optmising the goods within your business.
If you’ve got a warehouse that stores a certain number of products every month, inventory management is vital so you know how many orders are going out and in, and how much inventory you’ve got to fulfill them.
In a nutshell, inventory management encompasses of the following:
– Monitoring inventory levels
– Adding barcodes to your products
– Reviewing and recording stock
– Evaluating suppliers
What are the 5 types of inventory management?
Inventory management can be classified into five categories. These categories are:
1. Raw materials – items used to produce your products.
2. Work-in-progress – unfinished products that are not ready to be sold.
3. Packing material – items that you would use in product packaging.
4. MRO (Maintenance, Repair, and Operations) supplies – Components that help to support the production process.
- Finished goods – products that are ready to be sold
How to find the right inventory management software?
If you’re new to finding the right inventory management software, here are some factors for you to consider:
In order for you to stay on top of market demand, orders and prices, it’s worthwhile ensuring that your inventory management software comes with automations. Make sure that the automations are flexible, ready-to-use, and also easy to use. Customisable automations are always a plus and useful to have.
2) Reporting and dashboards
You won’t know if your processes are working well if you don’t analyse. It’s important that you have access to the right inventory data, if not your analysis will be futile. With a proper inventory management software, you’ll be able to visualise your data with ease and be able to keep you and your team informed while making the right decisions.
As mentioned above, customisations are key when it comes to considering an inventory management software. Your workflow could change and at times you may also need to make adjustments. Without a customisations feature it would be difficult for you to manage your workflow.
Finally, you’ll need an inventory management software that integrates with the tools that you use. For example, if you tend to use Excel for spreadsheets, make sure that you’ve got an inventory management system that allows you to easily import spreadsheets into your software.
Getting started with inventory management
As seen from the above, inventory management is critical to any company’s success. Not only does it help you with making decisions for your business, it also ensures that your business is running smoothly and efficiently.
An inventory management software can assist with the above, just as long as it has the right features. Take your time with researching so you can find the best inventory management software to suit your needs.