If you’re one of the 30.2 million small businesses, you need every strategy you can handle to thrive. While focusing on product development and marketing is important, don’t overlook streamlining inventory management. When you know the status of every product in your warehouse, you can make more strategic decisions.
Read on to learn 3 tips for improving your business inventory management skills!
1. Track Your Inventory
Would you be able to identify all products in your stockroom or warehouse? If you’re not familiar with your inventory, it’s time to be. Small business inventory management needs to involve at least an annual inventory review — but twice a year is better.
You can start by doing and reviewing manual stock counts. Though time-intensive, this process forces you to be aware of everything you have. Do double-blind counting, as well, to ensure accuracy.
Use software to capture data on your inventory. This will help you see which products are moving quickly so you can restock quickly. You can generate reports to share at quarterly meetings and compare results with projections from your business plan.
It helps to have an organized storeroom. Stock your inventory vertically to maximize space. And keep the most sought-after items closest for easy access with forklifts.
2. Standardize Processes
Focusing efforts on standardizing processes ensures that you won’t duplicate work responsibilities. For instance, you’ll ensure that only one part of your team checks in incoming shipments while another one clears space.
You also can standardize components of the payment process so you always know where you stand financially. Create an invoice form that clearly indicates payment information and features your logo. Turn to free invoice templates for help getting started.
And assign an employee to each item that is moved in the warehouse. That way, you’ll be able to troubleshoot missing packages or incomplete orders more easily.
3. Looks for Areas to Save
If you have a cluster of items that stay camped out in your warehouse, get them out! These items are dead weight and take up valuable real estate in your warehouse.
You’ll also want to find ways to minimize shrinkage in your warehouse. This refers to items that are broken, damaged, or stolen. Reducing this problem requires carefully tracking inventory — and setting up more security measures.
Require all individuals in your warehouse to have the proper badges. Make sure that they’re clear on employee policies regarding theft. And provide a simple way for employees to alert management to theft concerns anonymously.
The money you save from paring down your inventory and avoiding shrinkage can be applied to other things. Use the dollars to enhance marketing and expand your warehouse staff.
Improve Business Inventory Management
When you pursue business inventory management, you set your business up for success. Commit to inventory counts and develop custom invoices that you can send quickly. And look for ways to trim your inventory so obsolete items aren’t taking up space.
Find more tips to stay on top of your business. Check back soon for new articles!