how to design an inventory management system
how-to: inventory management design
design an inventory management system in AcctVantage ERP
One of the most important outcomes AcctVantage ERP fulfills is to help our customers actually manage the inventory in their warehouses or distribution centers.
We say “actually manage” because we don’t just track data. AcctVantage puts the processes in place and makes adherence to those processes easy because the inventory management system is responsive to your inventory management system design.
To follow are our top 5 “before you configure software” tips for designing an inventory management system.
For those who prefer video, let Apple Business Jo Lawson and AcctVantage President Tim Lau take you through the system. (in a new initiative designed to highlight professional-grade business products available for Macintosh, Apple invited AcctVantage to participate in a series of online seminars – this is the first of them).
Think about employee training FIRST.
Develop your systems and physical processes early with employees in mind. The best inventory management system designs are most likely to fail because of human error. When preparing, don’t just think about employee training for inventory management software, think about their entire work-day. Consider time-logging, best practices-sharing and tips for handling inventory when away from technology that will make it that must easier to manage.
Lock the doors!
Relax, we’re not talking about theft. We’re talking about a warehouse with controlled entry and exit points so that any material or data entering or leaving the warehouse can only travel through certain exit points. This protects you from the second most common issue in designing effective inventory management systems: documentation data-loss. If material moved in or out, it must be documented. Of course barcode scanners and radio frequency inventory lookup systems can reduce errors, but the first line of accountability must reside with your employees.
There are no ordinary datasets
Gather as much data as you possibly can about your inventory and its home. What goes on in your warehouse? You’d be surprised. Interview management and warehouse staff: find out what they like and don’t like in your inventory process. Very often, its your forklift operators you should listen to first before calling the ERP consultant.
User Experience Matters More Than Logic
You need your inventory processes and management software to be as user-friendly as possible. Don’t bite the hook and build an unnecessarily complex inventory systems for your warehouse employees. Make sure that data-entry and checkpoints are simple and efficient. If your UX is overwhelming, your employees will likely start cutting corners. (this tip is an easy application in AcctVantage)