Many businesses have a way to track their beverage inventory stock. As you begin your journey down the sales funnel it is important to keep track of your inventory stock. Knowing how much product you have on hand at any given moment is critical so that you can order products when it gets low and know where and how your cashflow is being used. Ensuring your inventory stock is getting bought and assessing the cash value of inventory stock on hand for accounting purposes is important too. Now we know why it is important to keep an eye out on inventory stock count, here are some practices to stock take your beverages efficiently.
Inventory stock count of your businesses beverages simplified
Try conducting your inventory stock late at night or early in the morning. This way you minimise the likelihood of mix ups because someone has moved it, or new orders have been placed and received. Conduct stock takes at the end of a period, like the end of the week, month or year. This way you can reconcile all your invoices and statements with the factual count to get an accurate picture of your bottom line.
Ordering the appropriate level of inventory
Forecasting the appropriate levels of inventory stock is crucial but also difficult. Avoid overstocking, especially beverages that contain dairy that is perishable and has a limited shelf life. Overstocking can also tie up valuable cashflow that could be used to improve the business in other ways such as marketing initiatives. Overstocking perishable items runs the risks that the stock may become spoiled and that is just throwing away money too. However, you do not want to stock too little for fear of loss of sales. A great way to avoid these scenarios is by monitoring sales levels for individual items. Use this data to establish safety stocks for each item and reorder inventory stock when items get low. With a lean business approach, you can order fresh inventory frequently, rather than stocking up for weeks on end.
Theft and stock take
Besides knowing what you have in stock and actual figures of goods, preventing theft by customers or employees is another major benefit of regularly taking inventory. It is important to compare your existing inventory stock against invoices and sales data periodically. Inventory calculations can indicate if theft may be occurring if things aren’t ever matching up. It may be an important practice to do more frequent inventory stock counts until you isolate the source of the missing items. However, you should try conducting the stock take yourself or assign the task to an outsourced agency, as an employee involved in theft may try to hide evidence by manipulating the stock take numbers.
Point-of-Sale (POS) systems are better to track deliveries, sales and inventory rather than by hand. Doing so by hand is time consuming and prone to errors. There are many POS computer systems, such as downloadable inventory software, available for retail establishments, some of which are designed specifically for the beverage industry. Some POS systems not only can streamline the inventory stock process, but also trigger alerts of automation orders when available inventory stock of an item reaches a certain level. POS systems also track sales data, making it easier than ever to forecast the level of inventory stock you need to have on hand.
Article by Melanie Chan in collaboration with our team of Unleashed Software inventory and business specialists. Melanie has been writing about inventory management for the past three years. When not writing about inventory management, you can find her eating her way through Auckland.