While there are the many different things that a business needs to “get right” in order to truly thrive and to have the best possible chance of overcoming the professional obstacles that are likely to confront them, it’s difficult to argue that many things are more important than effective stock management.
The way a business handles their stock, manages their warehouses, and keeps an organised log of their inventory, has everything to do with how efficient that business can be in an array of different ways, not to mention how well they can manage costs, optimise productivity, and be properly responsive to the ever-changing nature of the market at large.
Of course, it’s one thing to point out that effective stock management is vitally important – and it’s another thing altogether to actually know how to manage stock as effectively as possible.
Here are just a handful of things that a business should keep in mind when striving to manage stock effectively.
Proper demand forecasting is extremely important
When all is said and done, the whole reason why any business has stock whatsoever is – obviously – because they want to sell it to prospective customers.
But what if a business badly underestimated customer demand and didn’t gather enough stock? Well, clearly, they would miss out on a great opportunity to make a lot of money and grow their brand – and they might even lose their positive reputation due to their inability to meet customer demand effectively.
And what if a business radically overestimated customer demand for a given product and had an excessive stockpile that it could not sell within a reasonable timeframe? Well, that would be a great waste of money, as assets would now be tied up in stock that was simply remaining in a warehouse indefinitely.
The art of navigating this careful balance is called demand forecasting, and it is easily one of the most important things when it comes to proper stock management.
The better you can conduct market research and leverage different demand forecasting systems, the higher the likelihood that you will be able to keep just the right amount of stuff without missing out on a golden opportunity or wasting money on cluttering your warehouse.
An efficient and streamlined supply chain is essential if you actually want that stock to get anywhere
The “supply chain” refers to all the steps, contractors, and logistics involved in getting your goods from the warehouse to the customers.
Your supply chain may include external designers, international freight companies, and any number of other elements. But it’s essential to have this entire mechanism operating as smoothly as possible to ensure that your stock is flying out into the world at the right rate so that you can generate profit and keep your warehouse from becoming cluttered.
Good inventory control is a must
Inventory control refers to how you actually manage your stock to ensure that it is properly tracked and organised.
Based on the kinds of goods you are offering, it might be essential to operate on a careful stock rotation schedule, including things such as FIFO (First In First Out), which is especially important for perishable goods like foodstuffs.
Without good inventory control, you may well waste your stock needlessly.