Are you, presently, running a warehouse? If so, then you know there are a ton of different things in there and they all must work together to create an efficient workplace.
Unfortunately, because there are so many moving parts, it can be impossible to manage everything successfully, all the time. And, that might be the main reason for which so many warehouses (still) have inefficient operations.
Maintaining a good inventory management is one of the big headaches in the retail industry. Potential snags are scattered throughout the supply chain, but there are numerous ways to alleviate some of the most common obstacles to keeping a retail store well-stocked.
The last thing a retailer needs is to find out, is that there is less inventory than expected. Unfortunately, this still happens too often thanks to human errors and due to an old-fashioned practice of stock management by hand.
Keeping good inventory management is one of the big headaches in the retail industry. In this article, we present some stock management solutions and some of the most common inventory pain points (and how to remove them).
To take care of this problem, it is important to know that adopting an inventory management system it’s the best way to maintain an accurate count of warehouse inventory.
At the same time, you can still save money and employees` time which will be a plus into your business. And, the best news is… that feeling of not having the inventory you thought you did, will be a thing of the past.
Top retail inventory pain points:
1. Efficient procurement
We are talking about optimizing purchasing decisions, increasing margins, understanding lead times and vendor performance. All in all, we are looking into ways to boost procurement efficiency.
As the present business environment changes and the demand for purchasing officers is also rising in every business sector, it is a fact that boosting the efficiency of procurement will result in cost savings to the organization.
Maximizing procurement efficiency depends on tools and technology capable of optimizing purchase decisions and, at the same time, understanding lead time and assessing vendor performance to increase overall margins.
The more inventory you carry the smaller profit margins get. It is important to reverse this reality and discover how the right management software can help businesses to develop a just-in-time inventory strategy to reduce carrying costs.
And nobody doubts that all businesses aim at converting incoming resources into profits by turning those resources into sellable products and services. To reach those results, resources must be procured most efficiently otherwise it would lead to reduced profitability. Refining procurement processes in parallel with every other aspect of the company strategy, tactics and operations will be halfway into greater profitability.
2. Reduce inventory costs
The cost of inventory is the carrying cost of holding and storing inventory over a certain period. All over the world, this is calculated to determine the amount of profit a business may achieve. At the same time, it will also help to determine how much more or less inventory an organization needs to satisfy demand.
There are some different types of inventory costs included as purchasing costs, taxes, labour costs, obsolescence, insurance, security or transportation and handling.
Some good ways to reduce this kind of costs may be to embrace a just-in-time inventory system that lets you order everything you need the moment you need it or to monitor KPIs. In this case, by comparing numbers against your industry’s averages, you can assess how well you’re managing your warehouse, and what can be done to reduce inventory cost, among many others. The market has some good tech tools to help you do that.
3. End-of-life inventory management [H3]
Holding on to components and assemblies that are no longer in production or that the market stopped looking for can drain resources and take up valuable space in your warehouse. Putting an inventory management process in place, by using good software to properly handle parts that are approaching the end of their life cycle, will help your organization to increase efficiency and to save time and money.
An effective supply chain transparency makes it possible to quickly identify inventory items at their end-of-life (or near there) and helps professionals locate potential supply chain overages or shortfalls.
A good way to begin managing obsolescence and end of life is to put together a team to build and manage these processes. And please notice that these two ideas may not always mean the end of the road. On occasion, a part that goes through obsolescence or end of life process can come back into production, whether through an aftermarket order or by other means. Stay tuned as this may happen sooner than you think.
An optimized procurement process will help to develop an organization’s bottom line and increase efficiency.
4. Mobile warehousing
As we live in an always-connected world, we all rely more and more on technology in our everyday and professional lives to communicate and get work done. It’s almost impossible, for sure, to operate a successful business without embedding technology in the work environment and countless organizations are going through digital transformations to work more efficiently and stay competitive in an ever-changing digital world.
All industries are relying on mobile devices and applications to get work done and this is far more important when we are talking about the warehousing industry.
The area has particularly embraced the recent boom in mobile technologies making it essential for their day-to-day work and effective warehouse management; so, things like digital and mobile tools are now essential for them. Agile, adaptable cloud software solutions make it possible to quickly collect relevant, real-time product data while reducing the risk of human error.
As mobile technologies continue to expand and evolve, software vendors are investing in the development of mobile applications, aimed to streamline work processes.
In fact, mobile warehousing is an integral part of the complicated operations within a warehouse, allowing companies to enhance overall operations and replace expensive technology (that is not working anymore) by modern mobile devices; we are talking about some equipment’s that might be more familiar to the employee and cheaper to deploy.
That is where touchscreen displays and mobile devices came in, so data can be presented in a clear and concise, easy to read format and enabling seamless communication throughout the warehouse. This kind of applications may also connect to larger warehouse management software systems, giving employees access to inventory in real-time, for instance.
With abilities including picking and shipment verification, receiving and put-away, cycle and physical counting and product inquiry, these types of management apps are essential to warehousing companies nowadays.
5. Asset traceability
To track physical assets, either by scanning barcode labels attached to the assets or by using tags – GPS, BLE or RFID – which broadcasts their location, has become essential in the present times. But IT has developed it in such an amazing way, that these technologies can also be used now for indoor tracking of persons wearing a tag.
In fact, the more you know about assets, the better are your operational outcomes. Advanced asset traceability helps you reduce potential risk in your warehouse, protect existing revenue, improve sustainability, and increase overall profitability.
XPressBSS: the answer you are looking for
Let`s take a quick peek into one of the best solutions in the market, powered by OutSystems and designed to help warehouse managers do their jobs in the best way ever. We are talking about XPressBSS, a Customized Resource Planner, built with a set of business management modules (integrating ERP/EDI tools and business processes).
XPressBSS is an enterprise agility platform that focuses on the simplicity of use, enhances mobility and internationalization, and provides a comprehensive view of the business, resources, costs and income.
If you want to know more, please contact our team.