Inventory management is no easy task nowadays. Changing consumer trends and shrinking delivery windows complicate warehouse operations, stretching traditional fulfillment workflows to their limits and, in some cases, catalyzing complete dysfunction. Businesses can avoid both of these costly outcomes by implementing enterprise resource planning solutions. These platforms facilitate optimal operational visibility and give warehouse staff the power to effectively address key inventory challenges that materialize when legacy processes meet the modern marketplace. Here are some of the common inventory management issues ERP platforms can help solve:
Today, enterprises must achieve a delicate stocking balance. They need enough product to meet demand but not so much that items take up space for extended periods of time and drain resources. Sadly, many organizations fail in this regard, according to Industry Week. Some of these firms run out of product when demand nears its peak, while others maintain larger-than-required stocks that decrease cash flow. ERP solutions can easily prevent both of these outcomes, lending operations staff the visibility they need to manage stock and create seasonal forecasts for future use.
Ineffective performance measurement
Businesses must emphasize continuous improvement to remain competitive, as consumers are more demanding than ever. Unfortunately, most legacy warehouse management processes do not support the data collection workflows needed to track metrics like customer satisfaction and warehouse efficiency, according to Entrepreneur. Without this information in hand, operational stakeholders cannot see baseline performance measures and develop effective improvement strategies, should they be required. ERP platforms solve this problem, giving organizations the power to collect data of all kinds, from customer feedback to raw order intake and shipping numbers.
Antiquated backend tools
Established backend systems like Microsoft Excel continue to see widespread use across enterprises in myriad industries – and for good reason. These tools have proven themselves reliable, buttressing critical internal workflows for decades. However, the golden era for these once-reliable legacy assets is coming to a close due to the rise of industrial automation. Spending on cutting-edge automated technology such as robotic production equipment continues to grow, according to the International Data Corporation. At the same time, businesses are streamlining backend processes to match these advanced fixtures, as human-driven administrative and data-entry workflows are no longer viable.
While most companies are not yet in the position to fully embrace automation, they can prepare for the future and bolster efficiency by swapping spreadsheet-generation software for ERP platforms, according to TechTarget. These solutions allow shipping and receiving leaders to automate data collection and entry processes. This makes it easier to transition to fully automated workflows down the line while improving operations in the short term.
Vendor relationship problems
Collaborating effectively with vendors is now more important than ever. Apart from monolithic entities like Amazon, businesses cannot capably run their operations without external assistance. As a result, maintaining good relationships with third-party collaborators is absolutely essential. However, many firms struggle in this area due to the presence of ineffective internal processes or simple incompetence. This creates immense risk, as vendors could simply pull out of existing contracts to focus on more reliable, profitable and sustainable clients.
ERP solutions can address this issue, providing streamlined communication channels that make it easier to stay in sync with vital business partners, according to IT Toolbox.
Does your organization need assistance solving some of these common inventory challenges? Connect with Accent Software today. As a Microsoft Business Solutions Partner, we have been providing vendor-vetted Dynamics NAV ERP implementation services for over 15 years. Contact us to schedule a consultation and see what our seasoned implementation specialists can do for your business.