Imagine this: The shop supervisor goes to the warehouse in search of a particular part because the stock status report says there is one left. After searching for half an hour, he still can’t find it. Did someone forget to update inventory? Is it being stored somewhere new now? Frustrated, he orders 5 more figuring it’s a common enough part and overstocking is favorable to running out.
Meanwhile, two of the desired parts do exist in physical inventory, but they are in a corner pile of gathered, but unused, material from the last job. This section of warehouse has become an inventory “junk drawer” of sorts. Without a dependable system to reflect accurate inventory and a commitment of staff to properly return unused material, the shop supervisor can easily have invalid information.
These scenarios are very real and can also get very expensive. Piles of unused inventory, items wrongly designated or lost, the overstocked, the under stocked… all cause chaos and unneeded expense. These scenarios can be avoided through proper use of an ERP system that tracks inventory.
An ERP system can tell you how much of your inventory is stored and where it is— both in regards to which warehouse and which bin. Mobile apps used with ERP systems also mean warehouse staff can easily keep this information up to date and accurate by scanning bar codes out on the floor in real time to record inventory consumption, production, receipt and shipment.
Once the inventory is verified as accurate, a company can rely on an ERP system to keep track of how much inventory they have and how often to reorder items automatically. This saves the company money on surplus inventory and can help better streamline work flow by avoiding shortages. It can also help manage breakage, data entry error, accounting mistakes and fraud.
Employees will appreciate the efficiency too. They will no longer waste valuable time looking for items that aren’t in stock. Your ERP system will tell the employee the quantity of available material and exactly where to find it. Of course, the company’s bottom line also benefits when employees are doing more complex tasks than wandering a warehouse to find a part.
Customers will love it too. Turnaround time improves when the purchasing and stocking of material is streamlined. Products may ship earlier without manufacturing delays. One can save on part costs and pass savings to clients, and returns or mistakes are easily managed to help avoid scheduling mishaps and dissatisfaction.
So stop aimlessly wandering the warehouse, reordering items that you already have in stock, and running out of what is needed. An ERP system will take the guesswork and unneeded expense out of inventory.
If you’re ready to get your company and inventory organized, give Parallel Solutions a call at (440) 498-9920 and we will help you choose the ERP system that is right for you.
Mary Jo O'Neill