Thousands of dollars invested in raw goods and merchandise must represent workflows adding value to your business and satisfaction to your customers. As your inventory expands, it becomes impossible to manage this without some good tools and careful organization.

Here are some tips for building visibility and efficiency into your inventory processes.

Establish a Logical System

Keep your inventory catalogued not just by sorted SKU numbers, but categories and sub-categories. This makes it much easier to drill down to the exact product you're checking on.

Even if you're still using spreadsheets, you should also include a photo and a detailed description so your employees can locate the item faster. Any way to improve speed and accuracy will help you save time and serve customers better.

Develop a Process

You need to understand the entire workflow from ordering to re-ordering. Entry into the system upon delivery should be a fixed or automated series of steps. Storage should be allocated to precise locations.

It's also important to maximize space from floor to ceiling. This is typically done through the use of safe pallet racks from places like T.P. Supply Co, Inc. so that heavy or bulk items can be easily and quickly stored. Grouping similar items in the same rack, with hot sellers near the bottom, will make picking materials and product simpler.

 Choose the Best Tools

Managing your inventory is about more than tracking quantities. You've also got to track storage locations, costs, waste, shelf-life for perishables, vendors, and make immediate updates to all of this. To establish transparency in use and ordering, you've got to tie in ordering, invoices, safe stock level alerts, and electronic import of data for bulk purchases.

For a growing company this can be exceedingly difficult without the right software. It's important to find digital solutions that provide these functions through a user-friendly interface.

Monitor Behavior

Putting mirrors and cameras in place will both help to prevent accidents and reduce theft. Theft accounted for 35 percent of lost inventory in 2015. Both physical vigilance and system safeguards can help reduce your risks. It's important to run regular reports to determine if anything's gone missing or gotten damaged, and who was on duty. You can check this with camera footage to spot reckless or dishonest behavior quickly and reliably.

Regardless of how sophisticated your tools are, a good inventory system allows you to manage space, employees, and the flow of goods. Constant monitoring and evaluation will help you to make the right choices.

Author's Bio: 

Anica is a professional content and copywriter from San Francisco, California. She loves dogs, the ocean, and anything outdoor-related. She was raised in a big family, so she's used to putting things to a vote. Also, cartwheels are her specialty. You can connect with Anica here.