Whether you are running a large distribution center or a small online business, you need to be in control of your inventory. Today, any company that wants to succeed should be using inventory management software to maximize their efficiency and save costs on storage, shipping, and other supply chain processes. Applications such as EMERGE are loaded with features that can help you manage your inventory and take control of your warehousing operations. If you are in the process of shopping for inventory management software, consider some of these features that are highly important in order to run your business properly.
It is vital to be able to control your inventory throughout all of your sales channels, and a strong management program will allow you to do just that. By providing quality inventory control features, these programs can help you get rid of your manually created spreadsheets, ensuring that no data entry errors are made and that your employees can focus on more important tasks, such as improving warehouse functions and managing sales channels. EMERGE offers full inventory control, automating a tedious process that allows your company to perform to its maximum potential.
If you want to keep a track of your successes and failures, it is vital to have a comprehensive product history available. With apps such as EMERGE, you can track every purchase, sale, return, exchange, and adjustment with the click of a button. They will be automatically entered when any task is performed so that you can follow the path that every one of your products has taken. This allows you to analyze the performance of your products and see where things are failing – whether it is due to a specific malfunction or bad information throughout a certain sales channel. Using product history features allows you to track everything you need to know about every item, letting you make key decisions that may improve your overall profitability.
Barcoding and Barcode Scanning
Every company needs to be able to create and scan barcodes in order to identify every product. If you can use a Bluetooth or USB barcode scanner, you’ll be able to pull products, add specs to documents, and process and fulfill all of your orders in an efficient and effective manner. This can be translated to pick/pack/ship stations, where barcodes can be easily scanned, and information can be automatically updated to the server. This lets every warehouse know the stock levels of all warehouses across your sales channels, giving a more accurate picture of your sales and inventory. EMERGE offers a high-quality barcode scanning feature, contributing even further to the success of your company and maximizing the efficiency of your processes while reducing administrative waste.
You need to have sufficient demand forecasting services in order to reduce inventory shortages and overages. If you spend your resources wisely, you can ensure that your warehouses constantly remain at the right inventory levels so that you don’t have to shuffle to replenish your stock if you end up selling more than expected. EMERGE offers quality demand forecasting that lets you know what to expect from each sales channel based on past and current performance. When you get this information in real-time, you can make informed decisions that help you keep your inventory levels accurate and know when you need to make certain purchases.
To go along with demand forecasting, any warehouse should have the capability to quickly and automatically reorder products when inventory levels become low. You can set the limits on inventory so that the EMERGE app will automatically place new orders when you fall below these. You can even integrate with your suppliers and vendors so that you can issue purchase orders when they fall below the levels needed to fulfill your orders.
If your accounting department is still spending countless hours manually entering orders and inventory levels, you need to find an inventory management program that offers accounting integration. This can help reduce clerical hours by a large percentage, letting accounting employees focus on more important tasks for your company. EMERGE can send warehouse and inventory information directly to your accounting program, allowing things to be posted to your General Ledger and removing items automatically when purchases have been made. It also allows you to keep track of other business expenses that could affect your inventory management.
If you have any regulated products that might need to be recalled, lot tracking lets you identify the offending products and pull them out of your warehouses. The streamlined feature also tracks items that have been shipped to your customers or have been scheduled to be shipped. You can notify your customers automatically and help them remain safe and unaffected by the bad news. EMERGE allows lot tracking and really helps you minimize the effect of problem products before they can hurt your image or cause too much monetary damage.
If you sell food or pharmaceuticals, you need to stay on top of expiration dates and the shelf life of your product. With EMERGE’s batch management feature, you can track all of these things and pull entire batches at once if they have passed the acceptable dates. You can also manage them throughout the warehouses, making sure that those with upcoming expiration dates are shipped out first so that they won’t expire when they are in use. You can analyze this data to help you make decisions about how much you should be producing at once and where you should be sending your batches when they have become too old.
Exchange and Return Management
Exchanges and returns have been known to cause a headache after a headache for administrative personnel, and they can be an expensive and time-consuming process that takes away from your company’s goals. With EMERGE’s exchange and return management feature, you can easily process exchanges and returns while keeping your customers happy and satisfied. This lets your back office take care of more important work while the software processes the exchanges and notifies your customer. Invoices will be automatically adjusted, and the inventory will be tagged when it comes back. All inventory will be reconciled for exchanges and returns, keeping both your inventory levels and accounting records accurate, no matter what system you are using.
If your sales team is busy quoting current customer and potential new clients, they can enter the quotes into the system so that the warehouse can see what prices they have to stick to. It is easy to access, and the rates can be automatically applied to certain products when a sale is finalized. This eliminates the tedious back and forth between sales reps and operations teams – if the quote is in the system, it can be applied to the order with no questions asked. This is extremely useful for companies with traveling sales reps, as they can enter the quote from across the country and it will still apply to the relevant sales channels as the order are sent out. Quotes can be adjusted at any time from any place, making it easier on anybody involved with the process.
Product Catalog Management
If you produce a variety of different products, you can benefit from some automated organization and categorization. EMERGE’s product catalog management feature lets you enter products as you see fit and will automatically place them in the right category. This will be linked with warehouse operations, and you can see how each product or product line is performing, allowing you to make key decisions for the future based on the success of each product in each sales channel. You can even choose to get rid of entire product lines and replace them with new ones if you feel that it is the best decision for the future of your company. EMERGE will be right there to automate all of the processes involved with that decision.
If you have items that get damaged, you need to make sure that they are taken off the shelves and removed from your inventory. EMERGE allows you to make these decisions from anywhere and lets you track and label adjustments as they happen. You will get real-time stats about which products are being damaged on a regular basis so that you can decide to get rid of them or change their packaging. When you can adjust your inventory based on damage, you save time for everyone, allowing overage and shortage employees to focus on more important tasks. This is a key feature for any warehouse that sends or receive fragile items, and it lets you save time and money while maximizing the efficiency of your shipping and receiving operations.