Every business requires a supply chain through which all the resources and materials are coming. It is a difficult task with a lot of processes. All of the resources are saved in the inventory. When you purchase, make sales, and return, the inventory levels decrease or increase. But, it is a difficult task to manage the inventory.
Effective inventory management will allow you to have visibility of stock levels. Also, there won’t be any extra expenditure on irrelevant items. You will be able to buy new products when there are fewer units available. It can entirely contribute to run the business adequately and efficiently.
Through an inventory management system, you will have complete inventory control and visibility. Any business industry can benefit by implementing this system. So, today, we are going to discuss what is an inventory management system and the key features that it must have.
What is an Inventory Management System?
An Inventory Management system is a suite of tools & features that automate the inventory processes and operations. This system can store, source, and handle raw materials & well-finished items systematically. So, there aren’t any complications in the inventory operations.
The supply chain, purchasing, storing, & sales operations are handled by the inventory management system. It will change the whole approach to how you control the inventory. There will be a central database with all the information. Also, it has reference points to any other record as well.
Apart from the above, this system can track any physical inventory seamlessly. For that, it uses barcodes and labels tagged on the product. It will lead to efficient and quick operations. So, you will be able to make accurate decisions from the business point of view.
Why Implement Inventory Management System?
If you are into a business where you handle stocks or any other inventory type, you must need a system for doing. So, it would be best if you started thinking of implementing an inventory management system. In a situation of not doing that, there will be less productivity. Also, you won’t have any visibility and can’t track stocks as well.
With the features of the inventory management system, the finished product can be easily assembled. On the other hand, you can manage stock levels in various warehouses as well. There are some other reasons to implement the inventory management system:
- Centralized information with greater visibility.
- Get more work completed in less time.
- Quick & accurate order fulfilment.
- Structured stocking methods.
This system can directly contribute to the productivity of your business. But, there are a lot of systems available in the market. So, you must know about some essential features that must be included in the inventory management system.
Key Features of Inventory Management System.
There are a lot of distinctive features and tools that must be there in the inventory management software. It is so because these features help to achieve the core objective & goals. Some key features of an inventory management system are:
Easy to Use Interface.
A large group of people will use an inventory management system. The most significant thing is that the interface must be intuitive and easy to use. It will help anyone to use the software without any long training. So, it will save time. Plus, the users will be able to perform the operations quickly without any problems.
With a user-friendly interface, it will be simple to navigate through various menus and functions. There will be utmost understanding of how several things can be executed. So, it will accelerate the speed of performing different functions.
Control Inventory Control.
The main objective to implement an inventory management system is to have complete control over inventory without any limitations. So, the system must have a centralized dashboard. It will provide all the information regarding stock levels, purchases, raw materials, sales and much more. A systematic method will be used to source the products.
There will be high transparency among the employees and stakeholders. The inventory software will also assist in the supply chain operations. A lot of insights will be provided that will help in inventory forecasting. It reduces the risk of products being stock out. So, you will be able to spend your resources wisely.
Track & Manage Stocks.
With the inventory management system, anyone must be able to track and manage the stocks. To accomplish that, the products will be categorized under different categories according to product description, size, and variant. So, it is easier to get a specified product when you want to.
Nobody wants to keep a record of a sold product. This system will allow you to automatically update when a product or raw material is sold or used. The stocking levels will be maintained efficiently. It will generate an alert whenever an item is on the verge of being stock out.
Sometimes one can have multi-location warehouses where they store their inventory. It might be challenging to maintain a connection between those warehouses and have accurate information. An inventory management system can solve that problem for you. This system can integrate multiple warehouses with each other.
All the information from different warehouses can be viewed from a single dashboard. It can be achieved by using cloud storage to store the data. You will know when a particular warehouse has fewer units of a specific product. So, it will help you to maintain and manage discrete stock levels.
Product Barcodes & Tags.
When you manually pick up products and enter the details in software, there are higher chances of any error. An inventory management system will allow getting rid of any manual error. The products will have barcode and tags. They will be scanned when they arrive and depart from a warehouse.
This feature will automatically generate the information and control the quantity of an item. It will record all the data and amount of raw material. All the information will be displayed on the screen for convenience of the user. Moreover, it will take less time to complete the process than before.
The inventory management system will have almost all the information about the inventory. So, it must be able to provide real-time reports for better understanding. Due to this, you will be updated about different things in real-time. A lot more visibility will be there regarding the product consignment, order shipment, etc.
Also, it can be integrated with other existing software. Several departments can benefit from the information. The report generation will be completed automatically. The sales report of the various month can be compared to analyze the performance as well.
Different businesses can use an Inventory Management system in various industries. Anyone knows their business pretty well. So, if you are having trouble managing the products or raw materials, then there must be a need for a system or software. Then, you must indeed implement an inventory management system. You will be able to attain different benefits. But, before that, make sure that the key features are included in that system.