Stocktaking has come of age. Technology assisted stocktakes are quick, easy, effective, keep multi channel applications functioning and keep store / warehouse staff on their toes. The objective of stocktaking is “Control”.
- Control of your Stock efficiency
- Control of Stock shrinkage
- Control of systems accuracy
- Control of your business
So why do so many retailers fail in this area? A lot will do their annual stock take by request of their accountant. They will even fudge together numbers just to get it done. With so many retailers not having a proper handle on their stock control or processes to keep stock data accurate it comes down to the big question of “why” because of the multiple gains having accurate stock gives their business.
- Stock taking interrupts their business
- Costs money for overtime and lost sales if having to close for stock taking
- It takes too long to process their results such that the discrepancies can be analysed – so much can happen in terms of stock movement preceding a stocktake it becomes even more .
- The results can be irrelevant if the problems are endemic without cure
What’s the solution and how can technology help?
First and foremost what are the businesses systems that control the stock in the first place? Do they work? Are there technological or human error factors or a combination of the two that lead to the stock inaccuracy? And importantly is there an effective means of stocktaking to establish any inaccuracy and to what level those inaccuracies may exist anyway?
After years of Stocktaking in my own retail business I am only too well aware of the damage inaccurate stock figures can do to a business. So when we started developing LOIS the means to not only maintain accurate stock but to easily and quickly count it was right in the forefront of the development. I needed to be able to stock take Ad hoc without warning, do it quickly without store closure and be able to instantly analyse results on site, remedy and action. This is one of the amazing features within LOIS, where technology really lends itself and has made a significant difference to a number of retailers using the system.
Everyone knows these stock taking guns are expensive. So why not rent? The capital investment is not worth it if the guns lie idle for 11 and a half months a year. The system allows multiple concurrent guns on the same job. So if you imagine using 4 guns simultaneously the stock take will happen in 4 quicker than in the business that has just bought one gun. If the Guns are rented for the duration of the stock take as is available from LOIS then a quick calculation of costs will show that renting for guns once a year it would take 4-5 years to cost the equivalent of the purchase of one gun. That coupled to the savings by speedier stock takes, the rental system should not be ignored unless the guns are required for other applications on a day to day basis such as transfers, deliveries, replenishment picking etc.
Ultimately your stock figures mean so much to the business – you could even end up paying too much tax due to inaccurate stock information.
A full demonstration is available on LOIS’s stock taking system and we would be only too happy to explain the methodology and reasons why it works for so many businesses.