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4 Ways to Better Organize Inventory Management
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We've been focusing quite a bit on the importance of financial stability for small businesses. There are plenty of things you can do to ensure your company is on stable financial ground (what a great feeling, right?). One of them is ensuring your inventory is managed properly. Shoddy inventory practices leave business owners wide open to a host of costly scenarios, from not having what your customers want when they wanted it to inventory that walks right out the door.

Here are 4 ways you can organize inventory management at your company. Start implementing these tips and you're bound to notice a difference.

  1. Know MRO versus other inventory. In many companies, the inventory you use for maintenance, repair and operations (MRO) is scattered hither and yon. These are the items that aren't considered part of the products sold to your clients. In many companies, the MRO inventory is hardly inventoried at all while "real" products and profit-oriented supplies are kept ship-shape. Start putting the same priority on MRO inventory as your other products and parts.
  2. Keep MRO items in a central location. By keeping MRO inventory in one place, inventory management becomes much easier. Also, you lessen the chances of employees ordering repeats or stalling on a particular project because they think you don't have a part that you do.
  3. Take advantage of vendors. Because inventory management is so vital to a business's bottom line, many vendors have leveraged this pain-point as a way to enhance their own services. Speak with your current vendors and/or search for others who do product inventory and ordering for you. You get invoiced on a monthly, quarterly, or whatever period of time that makes sense, parts and products are stocked and organized as they need to be and employees can always find what they need.
  4. Implement education and technology. Keep your employees educated on the science and practice behind good inventory management as well as the technology and software programs that will help your company to do so. Check in with organizations like APICS and ISM.

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