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From Warehouse to Small Business: Inventory Tracking Systems

By Ethan Mudgett Subscribe to RSS | March 16th 2012 | Views:
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In the retail industry, an inventory management system is considered an absolutely essential tool. Keeping the inventory in check need not be a daunting task for workers or management. Through computerized methods, managing a store’s inventory is significantly easier, smoother, and quicker.

In most retail points or warehouses, an inventory management system has a specific inventory tracking system. This way, workers can pinpoint specific items in the inventory and locate it according to product type, category, and brand. The items are identified with a barcoding system, which also determines their price. While stored in the inventory, this is more like any book's barcode in a library or bookshop, which checks their status as available, unavailable, or sold.

In a warehouse, an inventory management system may include a picking, packing, and shipping feature. Warehouses in charge of collecting, packaging, and delivering goods to the companies they supply, need an inventory management system that categorizes their items as "raw material," "work in progress," and "finished product." This streamlines the workflow in the warehouse, resulting in a smoother, easier, and more comprehensible task for warehouse personnel.

In a more service-oriented enterprise like a food chain or beauty salon where many customers use the same products and services, scheduling and calendar features are useful. Inventory tracking systems for these kinds of enterprises are somewhat different because the inventory items are organized so that some items get to be purchased or used before others. These items are labeled according to how long they will last before a new item is used in their place.

Meanwhile, warehouse inventory tracking systems are also equipped with an asset tracking feature that searches for assets or items after they have already checked out of the warehouse. This way, warehouse staff can find items in any company they supply. Food processing plants, toy makers, automobile manufacturers, and medical supplies plants use this, so they can more easily recovering malfunctioning items and fix them.

Check in check out software is especially useful in changing the status of any inventory item. In a warehouse, an item is checked in upon entry and assigned a barcode. It gets checked in and out of various departments, as it status changes from raw material, to work in progress, and finally to finished product. Depending on the type of warehouse, the software either shows the item as either packed or sold, thus assisting the inventory tracking system.

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