How Distributor Inventory Management Software Can Increase Efficiency

Increasing efficiency by cutting out unnecessary steps and doing more with fewer resources is always a good idea, since it saves you money. This is even more critical during the global Coronavirus pandemic when staffing positions are harder to fill. Also, leaner headcount facilitates better social distancing, thereby reducing potential liabilities. Wikipedia cites several advantages of inventory management software including cost savings, increased efficiency, warehouse organization, and insight into trends. Upgrading your distributor inventory management software can help to improve your customer service, improve order fulfillment, increase the efficiency of your warehouse operations, improve purchasing decisions, and cut costs.

Better Inventory Information

Upgrading your distributor inventory management software will give you a better handle on what is in stock in the warehouse, at all times. You need to be able to see, for every product, the quantity you have on hand, the quantity on orders, the quantity being picked, the quantity on back orders and the quantity on open purchase orders and when these are expected to be received. This will reduce the amount of time your customer service personnel have to spend tracking down the right information to allow them to respond to customer enquiries.

Improved Order Fulfillment

Distributor inventory management software that gives you better insight into inventory will improve your ability to fill orders quickly and reduce error rates. Because you can always see what you have, what is coming in and when, you will be able to cut down on out-of-stocks which will result in greater customer satisfaction.

Greater Cross-Docking and Drop-Shipping Opportunities

Better tracking of inventory with distributor inventory management software that includes the ability to automate and manage special orders will create more opportunities to do cross-docking and drop-shipping. Both cross-docking and drop-shipping refer to processes to match inbound and outbound orders. These types of matched special orders are inherently more efficient because they reduce the need for the warehouse to keep these items in inventory and cut down on the handling and management of the incoming and outgoing shipments.

More Efficient Warehouse Operations

Using distributor inventory management software that tracks inventory by location allows you to optimize the layout and make better use of warehouse space. This means you can increase the number of products you can support with the same warehouse footprint. This cuts warehouse operating expenses on a per-product basis. If your inventory management software also offers the ability to conduct all warehouse operations to pick, pack, and ship and PO receiving and put-away using handheld scanners, this will have a big impact on efficiency. If the system can batch orders and direct the picker to the right location to fill the desired quantity of the product, this will cut down on unnecessary passes through the warehouse. Also, scanning items to pick and pack speeds your fulfillment processes and cuts down on errors.

Less Time Spent on Physical Inventory Counting

With better inventory management software there will be less need for frequent physical cycle counts to reverify quantities available. Physical counts are disruptive to normal operations and take time and effort. So, being able to cut back on the number of physical counts will free up resources and time to focus on other more productive tasks. In addition, distributor inventory management software that allows the use of handheld scanners for physical counts can greatly increase the efficiency of what is otherwise a tedious, time-consuming, labor-intensive, process. Handheld scanners will also cut down on errors in recording counts and re-entering count sheets into the system.

Better Purchasing Decisions

With full visibility into what is coming into stock and what is going out through sales or warehouse transfers, you can make better inventory replenishment decisions. Your distributor inventory management software should allow you to keep sales and use rates, lead times, and safety stock levels updated based on current information. This will allow you to optimize your purchasing and inventory levels. Even small improvements in purchasing and inventory can have a very big impact on your investment in inventory and free up capital for other purposes. If you can improve your inventory turns by one turn, this can save you hundreds of thousands of dollars.

Moving to Efficient Inventory Management Software

Contact ADS Solutions to see how you can make your wholesale distribution operations more efficient. Accolent ERP is cloud-based distributor inventory management software that will improve efficiency and save you money.