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Get Out of the Inventory Management Quandary with Better Data

Published on: Aug 10, 2016

Are you stuck in the typical inventory management quandary? You’re balancing the needs of senior management, who demand you reduce stock levels to contain costs. But on the other hand, customers are upset when you can’t fill their orders fast enough. It’s a common enough situation for inventory managers, but uncomfortable nonetheless.

Enter better data through ERP systems, to the rescue of frazzled inventory managers everywhere.

Smart companies know that as their operations grow, so too does the need for better data. When you’re managing a small back-room warehouse filled with goods created just down the hall, it’s easy enough to yell, “Hey, Bob, do we have enough blue widgets to fill Jane’s order?”

But if you’ve grown since the time when a good strong yell could get the order info you need back into production, then it’s time to think about more sophisticated solutions.

Barcoding, Automation, Inventory Management, and Warehouse Data

Like the example above, many warehouses are still using old-fashioned methods to maintain stock levels. Sure, it’s not as extreme as yelling down the hall to whomever happens to be near the shelves at the moment, but it’s just as crude when compared to other sophisticated inventory tracking methods available now.

Barcoding and warehouse automation, for example, reduce the time it takes to manage and track inventory. Instead of closing down for a week in the summer or winter to take manual inventory, you can easily update the inventory list with the swipe of a scanner.

Automated systems also reduce human error. Manual stock-taking is notoriously filled with errors. Compound that problem by data entry mistakes and you run the risk of multiple errors proliferating inside your database. Automation reduces the human component so that manual data entry is removed. This prevents multiple errors from entering the system, and keeps your stock count more accurate.

Inventory management and barcode scanning modules that work with Sage EM (formerly known as Sage X3) and Sage 300cloud (formerly known as Sage 300) make your work easier. Sage 300cloud (formerly known as Sage 300) integrates and synthesizes important data that can help you manage every aspect of your operations more easily, including warehouse inventory.

Order Data Coming Through!

Other innovations in recent times are systems (such as ERP products) that manage multiple data streams from different parts of the company, giving warehouse managers a big picture of all operations, not just their own corner of the world. You can see ordering histories, for example, and look at forecasts to make more accurate predictions of stock levels. Production can be increased to help maintain stock levels so that you’re never out of products. When order data is both historic and actual, you can predict stock needs much more easily.

Big Challenges Need Big Solutions

Warehouse managers know that inventory management is a big challenge. You’re always balancing the needs of customers with the demands of senior management. You know you need to keep stock levels up, but you don’t want a glut of unsold products taking up valuable warehouse space.

Big challenges need big solutions. That’s why we’re offering this free whitepaper, “Better Inventory Management: Big Challenges, Big Data, Emerging Solutions.” It’s filled with useful information to help you manage inventory levels better. Download it today.

IWI Consulting Group helps Canadian companies and businesses with their data needs through ERP solutions that can boost productivity and improve business planning. Learn more about our services on our website or call us at 1-866-916-3851