Knowing how much stock is in inventory at any given time is important in a product-based business. Unleashed’s inventory management software is loaded with great features to help you more accurately understand your stock levels so that your business can get the most out of its inventory. Let’s take a look at just a handful of the ways that software can improve the accuracy of your business’ inventory.
Inventory information is updated in real-time
Many businesses undertake periodic stock takes to understand sales trends and inform reordering decisions. A key problem with this method is the inaccuracy that occurs as actual inventory diverges from what’s on the books. Inventory management software tackles this issue by processing transactions in real-time, meaning that your business can benefit from an always up-to-date stock count.
Understanding what stock is available
Inventory management software makes it easy to separate out stock that you have allocated to fulfill existing customer orders and obligations from the overall stock that your business has on hand. It also allows you to handle stock that has been consigned to another warehouse or store. And when shipping stock between locations, it’s easy to put aside stock that has to be quarantined.
Integrating inventory management across all your locations through software
A good inventory management system is designed with the practical reality of multiple warehouses in different countries and currencies in mind. Unleashed lets you know where your stock is at any given time.
How does this benefit your business?
Having an accurate stock count means your business can keep its stock levels lean. In this way Unleashed can free up cash to invest elsewhere. Carrying the right level of stock may let your business cut down on warehouse space, or even just de-clutter the space you have!
On the flipside, accurate inventory can help your business be more responsive to customers, appear more reliable and never miss a sale after running out of stock. As inventory levels are updated in real-time, you can identify those rare (but problematic) shipping errors, giving you a chance to correct them before they damage customer relationships. And when customers get in touch with queries about the product they received, you’ll be able to easily access records and understand what stock has gone where.
Additionally, inventory management software lets you identify when you’re running low on stock, so you’ll never disappoint customers who can’t wait on a re-order. If your business faces significant competition, customer trust is more important than ever, so it’s important to make your inventory systems an advantage rather than a weakness.
And, of course, if your business utilizes period stock-takes it is more vulnerable to stock shrinkage – that is, the loss of inventory between manufacture or purchase and the point of sale. Inventory management software can help your business identify the causes of shrinkage, whether it’s down to staff theft, spoilage or other damage to stock. Moreover, if you are keeping a close eye on inventory and shrinkage, this can act as a disincentive to the small proportion of dishonest staff who might otherwise consider stealing product.
Accurate inventory can make doing business much easier, so if you’re not already using an online inventory management system, make sure you allocate some time to investigate this further.
Article by Melanie Chan in collaboration with our team of Unleashed Software inventory and business specialists. When not writing about inventory management, you can find her eating her way through Auckland.