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The Maintenance Management Blog

February 11, 2014

Why Inventory Management is Right for Your Business

Inventory Management

You would be surprised how often I get asked the question, "Do I need an inventory management system?" I invariably reply, "Do you have an inventory?" If you find yourself asking yourself if inventory management is right for your business, you have come to the right place.

When we think of inventory, we think of the term"s traditional meaning, such as products in a grocery store or items for sale. That is true in many cases, but there are other forms of inventory as well. Consider, for example, a library system in a big city. Libraries tend to have multiple branches, some standalone, some part of a school. Within each of those branches are a group of computers. Some of those computers are for use by the general public on a sign-out basis, and some are used by the staff who run the library branch. No matter their purpose, every one of those computers belong to the overall library system and therefore are part of its inventory.

Let's imagine there are 10 branches in our library system, and each one of those locations has 20 computers. Each of those 20 computers, in turn, have their own mouse, keyboard, and printer. In addition, each has a copy of an operating system, some office and photo manipulation software, and antivirus tools - all of which have yearly licenses and need regular updates, part replacements, and so forth. Now imagine that you are in charge of all that hardware and software. Can you see why you might need a way to manage all of that?

Why You Need Inventory Management

The benefits of inventory management may seem obvious and straightforward, and in some ways they are, but saving money and increasing profits are only part of the overall picture.

In addition to saving money, inventory management, when implemented properly, can help you save time and avoid errors in accounting. While the initial set-up time for an inventory management system can seem intensive, the time you will save (and human errors you avoid) in the long run far outweigh the up-front investment.

Managing your inventory can also help you to understand your customers" behavior better, which is key to the success of your business. It not only helps ensure that your customers/clients are satisfied, but it also allows you to identify trends and come up with areas to grow your business and increase your overall return on investments.

Reducing waste, maximizing employee productivity, and maintaining (as well as accurately projecting) departmental budgets are just a few more benefits of inventory management. At the end of the day, though, the most important reason why inventory management is right for your business is pretty simple: it's because you care about your company and want to see it grow and prosper. Is all of that possible without a management system? Sure - but why not do everything you can to ensure your company"s success?

 

Lisa Richards

About the Author – Lisa Richards

Lisa Richards is an experienced professional in the field of industrial management and is an avid blogger about maintenance management systems and productivity innovation. Richards' undergraduate degree in Industrial Engineering opened the door for her initial career path with a Midwest-based agricultural implement manufacturer with global market reach. Over a span of 10 years, Lisa worked her way through various staff leadership positions in the manufacturing process until reaching the operations manager level at a construction and forestry equipment facility. Lisa excelled at increasing productivity while maintaining or lowering operating budgets for her plant sites.

An Illinois native, Lisa recently returned to her suburban Chicago North Shore hometown to raise her family. Lisa has chosen to be active in her community and schools while her two young girls begin their own journey through life. Richards has now joined the MAPCON team as an educational outreach writer in support of their efforts to inform maintenance management specialists about the advantages in marrying advanced maintenance software with cutting-edge facility and industrial management strategies.

Filed under: Inventory Management — Lisa Richards on February 11, 2014