Inventory control system suitable for all size businesses?

All successful businesses, regardless of their size, will at some point be frustrated as inventory becomes difficult to track and they need to find an efficient inventory control system. The manual data entry and paper-based systems are fast becoming history. There are 100s of inventory control system solutions available to meet inventory control needs of companies from a small operator to a big beast.

Deciding on the inventory control system is without doubt an important decision and one for which there are many choices. The best way is to grasp the basics before you start shopping around.

The costs:

As a first phase for a simple inventory control system –  where prices start at just £1,000 one-off fee for the4 software or even lower pay monthly per user where the software provider will host the data for you. This can work out very cost effective for smaller businesses as you do not need to maintain your own server, saving you about £1,000 up front cost on IT hardware.

At a more enterprise level a cost effective inventory control system for warehouse management should be considered. This is typically for companies with up to 25 operators and starts at only £5,000.00, not the £25-100K that has been the case on older systems that are cumbersome to customise for each company.

The benefits:

There are many benefits to be derived from an inventory control system. They will automate the tracking of inventory and give managers the reports on the activities of their inventory. If you integrate your inventory control system with your ERP (enterprise resource planning) system or existing accounting system then information like sales orders and purchase orders can be imported and exported automatically.

The use of an inventory control system is essential for running a business that is buying and selling physical goods. Not only does it create greater inventory efficiency but it also makes life easier for your warehouse and stores operators which will keep them happy!

One extra benefit of going with a web-based inventory control system is that as the warehouse manager you can track your warehouse inventory from anywhere in the world just with a simple internet connection.

If you have a fairly large customer base then knowing exactly what inventory you have where can help you avoid coming up short - the worst of all inventory sins. For a business of almost any size, if you do not have an inventory control system then it should be something that you are at least thinking about if not implementing, as we have only ever seen delighted customers that never look back. Build the business case by inviting a few suppliers in and target a return on your investment (if paid upfront) of less than 12 months.