5 Common Inventory Control Mistakes to Watch Out For
For many businesses, if not all, inventory easily ranks as the biggest assets, especially for the manufacturing organizations. However, if left unchecked or improperly managed, your business’ inventory can turn into a huge liability. That’s the reason why many businesses work their butts off to ensure that they incorporate all the Inventory Control measures. This is the first step towards ensuring the survival and growth of their businesses.
Watching out how your business’ inventory flows is the first step towards ensuring your company stays afloat in this competitive business industry. Managing your business’ inventory is not as easy as it sounds. You have to work out how you can successfully incorporate all the Inventory Control measures that work for your business specifically.
By now, you should probably know that business sales numbers are not the only factors that can impact your bottom line. The business’ inventory-cost reduction is also just as important. And there may be a likelihood that you are not doing it right.
Check out these Inventory Control mistakes that many businesses make that end up doing more damage than good.
Using spreadsheets for inventory management
Many businesses still prefer to use spreadsheets to manage their inventory. However, with businesses, products and services being offered continuously upgrading and becoming more taxing, a lot of errors are prone to happen. Humans are not perfect, and everyone gets fatigued from time to time when overwhelmed with work.
Manual data entry is not an easy job. It can easily be flawed. And over time, you realize that these small errors build up and eventually adversely affect your business’ functions. Why? Well, businesses, especially the manufacturing businesses, require real-time and accurate information that ensure all data, business products or services, are in order. A common spreadsheet cannot guarantee any of these.
Often, you realize that spreadsheets provide outdated and inaccurate data which can land your business into hot soup with your clients.
The solution around this issue is to use a modern ERP system. A good cloud ERP solution software ensures you have everything on point when it comes to your business inventory.
Hiring employees who are not qualified to manage inventory
It is true that nobody ever has time to spare for any operations, especially to train new employees. However, this can put your business in a lot of trouble especially if you hire new employees who do not know a single thing about inventory to do the job. It is better to have a good Inventory Control system and one employee to handle all the inventory work than a team that has no clue how to handle the work. The only remedy to this issue is to ensure you meet the steps mentioned below:
Hire the right people
Emphasize on training from the start
Hold your inventory managers accountable
Not automating your inventory
As mentioned before, many businesses still use manual business inventory processes for tracking stock. But by this, you are wasting a lot of precious time and money. What’s with all the sifting of inventory papers and fixing the small errors that you come across one by one? Even so, you find that some mistakes still get through. After all, nobody is perfect.
Studies show that even the most proficient data entry operators are bound to make at least an error for every 300 typed characters he/she enters. This level of inaccuracy can be enough to deal a lot of damage to your business’ inventory. Even the smallest bit of inaccuracy in your inventory is enough to give you migraines especially if your inventory includes thousands of products or services.
The only way to combat this issue is to put up an automated system which allows multiple employees to track your business’ inventory across different devices in different locations at different times. This ensures that there is very minimal to no error in your business’ inventory. This is easily the best Inventory Control measure you can enforce in your business’ stocks.
Forgetting to re-stock
Running out of units is also another leading issue that can cause significant financial loss. Forgetting to re-stock your business’ products is not an uncommon occurrence especially if your warehouse is super-busy. It is also relatively easy to lose track of your business. Sometimes, you might get so caught up in some other things that you fail to re-order for your diminishing inventory. And by the time you realize that you are running low, it is too late.
The best way you can combat this issue is to set auto-alerts that notify you whenever any of your items are running low.
Yes! Bad communication always seems to ruin just about everything. And it has the potential to deal even more damage to your business’ inventory. Often, you find that the small businesses suffer the most from bad communication that can result from a few misplaced items. For the smallest business, any inventory loss is never an option. It is not that difficult for even the best and most hard-working teams to misplace items from time to time especially when in crunch mode.
To combat this issue, you can have a good team management program to help you sort out any miscommunication between you and your inventory team. Some of the common team management programs include Slack, Trello, Basecamp, and even Asana. All of which come with both the free and paid plans that both work perfectly. So, whenever a team member needs to check which of the business’ items to track, he/she simply logs into the programs and look for notes or other relevant information on the said items.
There are countless mistakes businesses make especially when it comes to inventory. Some of which have not been discussed in this article. But which also have the potential to deal a lot of damage to your business. It is, therefore, crucial that you put up all the Inventory Control measures you can to ensure that you limit the amount of damage that can be done. You can always prevent financial losses of your business that are caused by simple inventory issues.