Essential Considerations When Choosing an Inventory System
When it comes to managing inventory, the accuracy of records is vital because it serves as an ultimate basis for stocking decisions. For instance, even simple data entry and inventory counting errors can still bring serious consequences like overstocking, delays in restocking and shipment. More often than not, such errors would occur in businesses that still follow the manual inventory approach which, without a proper solution, can extremely put the satisfaction of customers at stake.
Fortunately, we are now living in a digital age where digital solutions that automate and streamline business processes are already widely available. In this case, using a digital solution like an inventory system can greatly save your business from the risks that manual inventory exposes it in.
Inventory systems are mainly built to help companies automate their inventory management and monitoring. They exist not only to do away with human errors but also to make the processes more time and cost-efficient. The perks include enhanced employee productivity, way more reliable inventory data, and a boost in profitability if utilized right.
Essential Considerations When Choosing an Inventory System
As inventory systems are a costly investment, it pays to make sure that the inventory system you’ll be purchasing can get you the best return of investment. Here are essential considerations to bear in mind:
The MAIN Consideration – Your Requirements
Before you dig into the other factors and get carried away by the features that an inventory system can offer, first and foremost, you must know why you want to automate your inventory works. What problems do you want to do away with? What solutions do you need? What areas do you want to improve and how do you want them improved?
Reliable inventory systems like what Sortly, a reputable inventory solutions company provides, can help you track your inventory quickly and efficiently through QR and Barcode Scanning technology, helping you stay on top of stock levels automatically. They also come with a mobile app, thus you can easily stay updated, anytime, anywhere as long as you have enough access rights. Reports are automatically generated too for future managerial reference.
You will most likely come across a plethora of inventory system options once you start searching about it on the internet. In order to make a guided choice, you have to be clear about your requirements first.
Another important consideration when choosing an inventory system is its price. If your requirements have gone too complex, chances are you will end up having to choose from the priciest inventory systems in the market. But of course, your budget has the first say about this. Before sealing the deal, you have to be sure that your business is financially stable and capable to make such a great digital investment. What is your budget range? Consider setting this first before you start looking for one.
Investing in an inventory system does not mean you no longer have to hire manpower. Remember, such digital solutions are there only to assist employees; technology cannot and must not replace people.
If your business set up goes through complex considerations, then you will want to ensure that your inventory system can cater to the changes should the need arise. This is where the scalability of your system matters most.
To inquire about this area, you can talk to your potential software providers and ask them upfront if their software will be able to meet changing needs and can deliver necessary customizations in the future.
If you have failed to consider this aspect, future unmet specifications might necessitate you to purchase another inventory system; and your old inventory system investment will be deemed useless.
Another important consideration when buying an inventory system is its user-friendliness and overall usability. It enhances the effectiveness of having an automated process and encourages your staff to adapt to such innovation at an optimum.
That said, make sure that your inventory system is easy to learn. As much as possible, do not be lured in inventory systems that demand hours to be learned. Instead, choose one with graphical user interface and design, and implementation that everyone can easily grasp and adapt when they look at the screen.
The very point of inventory systems is to simplify and automate your inventory management without compromising its efficiency and data integrity. Hence, when you choose one, consider this essential aspect too.
Multiple Location Coverage
If your business is operating in multiple branches, you got to make sure that the inventory system you will be purchasing is ready to maintain a centralized database where all records are synced but can be segregated per location. You will not want any ad hoc workaround happening in the future.
Aside from the abovementioned considerations, looking into the inventory system’s flexibility is also important especially if you want to keep up in this highly technological age. It would be a big plus if your inventory system has a mobile app version as this benefits your managerial team as a whole. Choose an app that enables you to transact even without an internet connection.
Once you have selected an inventory system, the last thing you will want to happen is having a team left alone and helpless after a technical glitch came up or they could not figure out how to change the settings.
When some vital information seems missing, you will want them located right on. Unfortunately, you cannot avoid that if your software provider has incompetent or incomplete technical support coverage.
Before you sign the deal, ask your provider about the kind of support your package comes with especially when it comes to user orientation, warranty, training, and assistance.
An ideal software package comes with all the promising features and top-notch support at a very affordable price. The real world does not offer that. However, just taking the time to go through these essential considerations will surely get you the right inventory system that you will need for your company.