Inventory Control Tips for Your Business
Wednesday, September 18th, 2013 in Blog
Inventory control is an issue that affects many businesses. As a result, there are plenty of books filled with hundreds of pages about the “philosophy” behind this practice. While that can be useful in some cases, what most businesses actually need are actionable tips to ensure that their inventory control systems are as effective and as efficient as possible.
If that’s exactly the type of advice you’ve been looking for, our locksmith & security expert has some information he wants to share with you. Because we offer locksmith and security expert services, we’ve been exposed to a wide range of inventory control systems. This has allowed us to see firsthand what approaches are highly effective, as well as which ones miss the mark. Based on the insights we’ve gained, here are the tips we want to share with you:
You Have to Be Able to Accurately Project
An inventory management system that isn’t capable of providing accurate projections isn’t doing a business any favors. If it can’t combine metrics like bills of materials, planned shipments and open orders, it’s not going to deliver the type of performance you need. Any business that doesn’t have those capabilities needs to start looking for an upgraded system.
Remember That Inventory Isn’t an Independent Variable
A fairly common mistake businesses make is isolating inventory from expected demand. In order to have an accurate forecast that maximizes your working capital and minimizes anything that doesn’t add to your bottom line, your inventory control system needs to deliver actionable forecasts.
Safety Stock Shouldn’t Sit Around Forever
One topic that comes up regularly in the previously referenced philosophy behind inventory control is the ideal amount of safety stock a business should keep on hand. In case you’re not familiar with that term, safety stock refers to extra inventory you have in the event that demand for what you sell suddenly spikes.
While there are plenty of opinions floating around about safety stock, the simplified answer is safety stock is only useful if it’s being actively used. If you have stock that sits around forever, it means you’re not maximizing the value of each inventory dollar of your business.
Know Which Metrics Matter
It’s definitely true that metrics play a central role in inventory control. But, just as with plenty of other areas of business, many inventory operations get too caught up in worrying about metrics that don’t provide anything actionable. Unless you take the time to identify which metrics actually move the needle for your business, you’re always going to be disappointed with the performance of your inventory controls.
Make Security a Priority
All the access control and management systems in the world don’t matter if your inventory isn’t secure. In order to make that happen, you need to have procedures like proper inventory counting in place. You also need the right type of security system to keep your inventory safe at all times of the day. Since our Ithaca locksmith and other security services are for both consumers and business, feel free to give us a call if you want more details about what we can do to help keep your inventory secure.