What are the things that drive you the craziest about your inventory? Is it not knowing exactly what’s on the shelves? Is it not knowing what’s coming in next? Is it trying to figure out why you only have two gadgets in the store when you thought you had three? Is it not knowing the real costs for the items on your shelves? Does the prospect of taking a physical count make you want to take to your bed with a hot water bottle? Let’s see if we can start to take the sting out of some of these headaches! Let’s start by talking about how to maintain an accurate inventory.
Ever watch a child with a piggy bank? Most children can tell you, to the penny, how much money is in their piggy banks. Why? Because they have counted the money again and again. Your inventory is your piggy bank. Knowing how much is on your shelves, in your warehouse, stuck in the manager’s office, and, sometimes, in the bathroom or even in your garage is not only very important, but it may help you stay in business during these tough economic times. In the 20+ years we have been selling retail POS systems, every single prospect has said that one of the top three reasons they want a new POS system is to track inventory. Three things control how accurate your inventory counts are: Accurate receiving and transfers. Accurate checkout (scanning is the #1 way to keep your inventory accurate) and /or accurate order packing, if you ship merchandise. Cycle counts. If you've done these and are running a Point of Sale system, run the "Inventory Valuation Report" (every POS system worth there salt has this report even if it goes by another name!) and that will give you a completely accurate picture of what's in your inventory.
What is the payback for keeping your counts accurate? For starters, you'll stay in business and make more money (or know exactly why you're not making money). And, how important is it that your employees will trust the data in Point of Sale system? How useful is it when someone wants to know if you have something in the store, and you look it up in the system and know that the data are correct? Isn't this why you are considering purchasing a Point of Sale system in the first place?