Flowstore Slashes Admin & Boosts Stock Accuracy with Unleashed

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The team behind UK-based Flowstore has been making and distributing innovative material-handling solutions since 1984. After major discrepancies in end-of-year stock counts, they realised they needed a more reliable way to track and manage inventory.

Flowstore Systems Architect, Sam Walker, breaks down how implementing Unleashed inventory management software has “locked down their inventory” and shaved days off their annual stocktaking process.

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From missing parts and daily inspections to less admin and fewer discrepancies

Flowstore provides products that make life easier for their customers. From bespoke warehouse solutions to their popular FlowTube modular systems, everything Flowstore does centres on the principles of lean manufacturing.

But as Sam Walker explains, their internal stock management processes were lacking the holistic efficiency that their products were helping Flowstore customers achieve for themselves.

“Before Unleashed, we didn’t really manage our inventory at all. We used to find that jobs would be sent out with a different castor wheel from the one that was in the system. Instantly, you’ve screwed up your stock records.”

After implementing Unleashed, Sam and his team have massively cut back on time spent counting and reconciling inventory each day.

“It’s only rare occasions [now] that we need to make adjustments,” Sam says. Previously, you would have a purchasing manager going out to the shop floor – often every day – and making adjustments. Or we’d wait until the end-of-year stocktake [and] spend days going through every product and making a tonne of adjustments.

“We’ve managed to effectively eliminate the need for the purchasing manager to visit the shop floor every day and reduced our annual stocktaking time by days.”

End-to-end order fulfilment, streamlined

Flowstore is a multifaceted business: they’re manufacturers, distributors, and retailers – now venturing into the eCommerce space. To track and manage the various tasks involved in kitting assemblies and selling online, they needed a system that could function across the entire fulfilment process.

Sam says Unleashed has been the perfect tool for the job. “Everything that we sell is a bill of materials in the background. You just put in one product code, and you know that, underneath, there’s a whole bill of materials that’s going to get flushed out of the system.

“A big goal for us [is] growing sales – particularly in the eCommerce environment. With extra orders, [comes the task] of keeping the extra processing and manhour costs down. The fact we can link other software to Unleashed makes that possible.”

Like any business, cutting costs and eliminating waste are vital for Flowstore’s continued success. In Sam’s words:

“Having a real grasp of our inventory – what we need to purchase, when we need to purchase [it], and dead stock we need to get rid of – is key for us. The biggest benefit [of Unleashed] is that our inventory is locked down.

“It’s going to remain our inventory management software for the foreseeable future.”

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Oliver Munro - Unleashed Software
Oliver Munro

Article by Oliver Munro in collaboration with our team of specialists. Oliver's background is in inventory management and content marketing. He's visited over 50 countries, lived aboard a circus ship, and once completed a Sudoku in under 3 minutes (allegedly).

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