Have you ever found yourself unable to locate items in your warehouse? Or found that your records don’t match the stock you actually have? Don’t worry, you’re not the only one - managing your warehouse inventory is easier said than done.
Effectively managing your warehouse stock can provide a number of benefits. You’ll increase the amount of free space, lower your costs and reduce the risk of human error - all of which will enhance the efficiency and performance of your manufacturing business. So what are you waiting for?
We’ve outlined some of our top tips for inventory management to give you a starting point for the management of your own warehouse.
Monitor your inventory
Although this might seem like an obvious suggestion, you’d be surprised at how easy it is to lose track of your stock. By using an inventory control system you’ll be able to keep on top of what you’ve actually got in your warehouse.
An inventory management system will also allow you monitor all elements of the supply chain, right through from the moment you order a product to when you ship it out to a customer. Being able to monitor your stock in this way will help you figure out which items should be reordered and which items you should no longer be selling. In other words, a management system could help you increase your sales!
Each inventory management system is different, and they tend to have a mixture of features depending on the software you use. On the whole, most systems offer the following:
Barcoding for products
Data analysis and forecasting
Inventory tracking - including orders, reorders and returns
Account management tools such as a customer relationship management (CRM) system
Alerts and reminders
If you’re now thinking I haven’t got the funds to invest in a new system, don’t worry - we’ve looked at 7 ways you can reduce warehouse costs so you can have more money to focus in inventory management.
Use the right warehouse equipment
To make the most of a stock management system, you need to have the right storage equipment in your warehouse. By storing your products correctly, you’ll make the most of the space in your warehouse. Not only will this free up extra room for additional stock, but it’ll also give you peace of mind knowing your products are stored safely.
It’s impossible to eradicate all human error from the workplace. We’re all people after all, and mistakes can happen. But, to minimise the risk of human error, consider delivering high-quality training to your employees, specifically focusing on stock management. By offering this training to your staff, they’ll be able to do the following:
use best practice when it comes to inventory management
ensure that the warehouse inventory is carefully monitored
manage the stock in an organised and efficient way
*A top tip - when you deliver the training, consider specifically addressing processes or items that might not follow the standard procedure. This’ll help them to remember it’s different from the norm!
Be aware of any new technology on the scene
Things change so fast in the digital world, it’s important to keep yourself up to date with any relevant changes that could affect your processes. By making sure that you’re using the most current system, you can be sure that your inventory management is the best of the best!
We recommend using social media platforms - such as Twitter, Facebook and Youtube - to keep yourself updated about recent trends. If you’re already on Twitter, we’d suggest following @InventoryMgmt on Twitter for the latest inventory management tips.
If you want to learn more about the impact of digital technologies on the manufacturing industry, head over to our blog post which looks at the benefits of digital manufacturing.