Managing inventory is one of those things that seems like such a chore that many businesses allow their standards to slip. It’s the kind of work that no one wants to do, so it ends up not getting done. The obvious solution is to implement a system whereby everything that comes in or goes out of business is automatically recorded.
The advent of barcode scanners and computers made such systems possible initially, but smartphones have enabled us to take the concept to a whole new level. Here are some of the reasons you should switch to app-based inventory management.
Depending on the app in question, you might not even have to pay anything – open source software is awesome! However, there are lots of premium options that are worth every penny, especially if they form part of a package that includes other software and platforms.
There are options at every price point. If your workers already have smartphones or are issued by your business, you won’t have to worry about hardware costs.
Everyone Has a Smartphone
The vast majority of people today own a smartphone. Of course, as a business requiring your employees to use an app, you do have an obligation to at least offer them a company phone. You can find some really good value cellphone contracts for corporate clients, so they are worth looking in to.
More Power Than a Scanner
Even a cheap smartphone today is an impressive little computer. They are certainly much more powerful than a handheld barcode scanner, and this enables you to do a lot more with them. You can add other apps to supplement your inventory tracking, potentially improving efficiency by moving other functions over to apps.
It’s So Simple
All you need to do is scan the barcodes of any shipments or inventory that comes in and the app will handle the rest. That’s all there is to it! Find an integrated solution that enables you to use your smartphones to scan stock as you sell it, or as you ship it (depending on context) and you won’t have to ever do another audit again! Anyone can use these apps; all they need to do is point their phones at the barcode.
Machines > People
Machines don’t make mistakes. And if they do make mistakes, it’s because a person told them to. And if they’re doing things other than what they’re told, then we have a whole other problem – one culminating in humanities enslavement. But until the machines rise up in a murderous rage, they are considerably more reliable than people are. Simple human error is unavoidable, and we’re not suggesting that an app will be perfect, but it is hard to overstate just how much difference this approach can make.
The small increases in efficiency and reliability that will arise from a simple, streamlined automated approach to inventory management translate into potentially massive increases inefficiency. If every worker is able to shave a few seconds off some of their daily tasks, you will end up making huge cumulative savings. App-based approaches are undoubtedly the future of inventory management.