When most people talk about inventory management, they usually link it with retail systems. Although retail operations rely too heavily on inventory control, inventory management software is commonly used in various businesses, from production to utilities, health care, education, schooling, government, and much more. Inventory management software automates and centralizes the method of monitoring inventory flow and maintenance to make sure that the proper supply of inventory is sufficient at the right time and is of standard quality.
Inventory management – is a necessary evil known to business owners. This fact is reputed in each and every manufacturing and warehousing sector. This article will give you an in-depth understanding of what inventory management software is, what it does, and why electronically managing inventory is immensely important for every supply chain enterprise. It will also give you a precise grasp of certain essential features that inventory management software should have.
Anyone operating a production and supply business understands that inventory is one of the company’s most critical revenue sources. A precise inventory evaluation will drastically impact sales and revenue, and making a mistake could be unfavorable to the business.
“Out of stock” cases are always considered a disappointment, and sometimes it negatively affects your earnings and credibility. Even if you are a small company or even an established business, managing a single retail site or numerous consignment outlets and distributors, inventory management helps monitor and regulate supplies and stocks and helps manage your inventory and revenue.
Inventory Management: What is it?
Inventory control is part of running a supply chain. Inventory management includes keeping track of stored products in a business. Accurate inventory and warehouse handling are indispensable in retail, manufacturing, distribution, and all other industries to ensure that a company has adequate supply to meet consumer demands.
In a general sense, it entails managing and coordinating with all of the different operations of a company to make informed decisions.
What is an Inventory Management Software?
Whenever inventories have not been accurately and adequately handled, either of the two things will occur – either a company will lose a lot of money with its potential sales or waste money storing unneeded goods.
An inventory management software is the one that handles the entire inventory process (from quotations to order fulfillment). It also keeps a record of the buyer, manufacturer, work orders, deliveries, and other reports along the way, so that a business owner can keep track of what goods are being sold and how many.
Streamlining inventory management gives a strategic advantage for businesses since they can help predict trends and prepare accordingly. Inventory management software enables forecasting of potential demand and supply to help adjust shipping and deliveries and reduce over-and understocking-related costs.
Inventory management software tools also provide total output, valuation reports, and details on the overall inventory. Here are some advantages of having inventory management software for your business:
Benefits of Inventory Management Software
- Inventory management software monitors and records all the inventories and shows a summarized overview of the stock in hand.
- Tracks cost and optimize performance by managing consumer preferences accordingly.
- Fast and straightforward reordering.
- Software for inventory management can be linked with a range of other software programs, including accounting and ERP or Enterprise Resource Planning systems.
- Maintain stock visibility through system-generated reports with each store or warehouse location at any time.
- Projection of potential demand by evaluating data trends and stockpiling inventory.
Therefore, excellent inventory management software should keep track of the number of inventories in hand and be efficient enough to have quantifiable business insights, for instance, distinguishing low and high-performing items and issuing reorder reminders whenever stock supplies are low.
Must-have features of an excellent Inventory Management Software
Accurate inventory tracking
It is also crucial that staff in control of inventory management know, in real-time, what products are in stock and where they are stored in warehouses to help improve productivity, reduce costs and streamline the process. The key to accurate inventory control is the most significant aspect of inventory management software systems.
An inventory management software must provide comprehensive real-time information with the critical components for the supply chain management. This prevents you from getting stockouts, making automatic reorders, and getting instant alerts whenever sales are made.
Counting and inspecting inventories manually is stressful and susceptible to human error. If the inventory monitoring process is carried out manually, your business may run into irreversible problems.
The most popular method for counting inventories is barcodes. By incorporating barcode software into the inventory management software and acquiring widely available barcode scanners from a barcode company, businesses will utilize this technology to improve precision, efficiency and dramatically reduce costs.
Inventory management will benefit significantly from the integration of barcode scanning tools. This optimizes inventory monitoring, stock-taking, and stock management, making it so much more efficient. Companies can serialize products or asset tags automatically, thus, simplifying tracking.
Quotation, Purchase, Shipment, and Order fulfillment
Purchasing decisions handled by a business directly affect how accurately the inventory levels are monitored or regulated. Inventory management software guarantees that stocks are automatically updated whenever a purchase order is placed. The software must make it easy to create POs with all the required supplier details.
It must also generate POs automatically when products are low in stock, submit partial orders and monitor back-orders, track the POs from beginning to end and label Purchase Order as partially received.
CRM (Customer Relationship Manager)
A CRM enables a business owner to securely store customer information regarding record purchase history and their preference to forecast probable behavior.
Comprehensive inventory reports
An inventory management software must have metrics that can provide an in-depth look and evaluate how an inventory performs over time.