My inventory arrived. Now what?
In our Track in-transit inventory post, we wrote about why it’s important to keep tabs on inventory that is on the way. The work of managing your much-anticipated inventory doesn’t stop once it arrives at your warehouse. Ensuring that the correct facility receives the inventory, making sure that the inventory you receive matches ordered quantities, and that inventory is put away promptly are crucial areas to monitor throughout this process.
Why is it important to audit your inventory?
Nobody can accurately predict what will happen to inventory as it makes its way from suppliers to your teams. Unexpected damages or delays can put your team behind schedule once your inventory arrives.
An audit of your new inventory helps you:
- Check for received inventory discrepancies: Once your inventory arrives, you’ll want to account for any missing or damaged inventory and make sure you are able to address these discrepancies with your supplier as soon as possible to prevent inaccurate invoicing.
- Ensure your teams are operating efficiently once the orders arrive: Now that your inventory is here, you’ll want to make sure it is properly stored in the warehouse or sent to your stores. Knowing how long the process of dock to stock takes allows you to adjust time estimates for waiting teams.
- Fulfill outstanding backorders with new inventory: If you have customers waiting for backordered stock, you’ll want to know which amounts of inventory should be set aside to complete those orders.
What makes auditing new inventory difficult?
With so many different steps and so many people involved, it can be hard to make sure you aren’t missing anything when auditing your new inventory. Here are just a few factors that can contribute to this:
Just like you account for the amount of time it will take for the inventory to get to you initially, you also have time budgeted for how quickly those units will be put away or sent on to their next destination. Delays in putting away new inventory can cause frustrating delays for your customers and throw off your carefully planned deadlines.
Many people involved and many moving parts:
On top of the unexpected, there are many people and moving parts once your inventory arrives. There may be a number of items that need to be sent to your retailers while some need to be used to fulfill backorders. With so many potential destinations, it can be easy for items to get lost or numbers to be incorrect.
Unloading and putting away newly arrived inventory is a continuous process. Information from an hour ago can quickly be out of date which means you need to make sure you are pulling in the most recent information so you have an accurate picture. Current data ensures your team is up to date on available inventory levels and can clearly communicate expected ship dates to your customers.
How can Parabola help?
Auditing inventory requires collecting the most up-to-date information from many data sources. Trying to stay on top of this manually is a challenging and sadly unrealistic endeavor. Parabola lets you:
- Combine your report data and present it uniformly so you can share it with the rest of your team.
- Automate data runs so you have the most up to date information every day.
- Use folders and templates to organize your team’s reports so you can easily loop in other team members while building out and sharing reports.
In this video, we’re going to walk through a Flow that shows how much of the newly received inventory has been put away and how much still needs to be moved:
If you’re interested in building a similar Flow to audit new inventory as it comes in, you can start building your own Flow for free by signing up for Parabola. Email us at firstname.lastname@example.org and we can help you get started!